Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Public schools do a great job... at teaching kids to be Stupid

This is a 2006 news piece by John Stossel, from ABC's 20/20.
From the description posted at Youtube:

20-20 investigation by John Stossel entitled "Stupid in America" highlighting some of the flaws with the education system in the United States. The story started out when identical tests were given to high school students in New Jersey and in Belgium. The Belgian kids cleaned the American kids' clocks. The Belgian kids called the American students "stupid", which gave the piece its name.

Here are some lines that stuck with me as the program went on:

Stossel: "The longer American kids spend in schools, the worse they do."
Grandmother: "The children are not stupid; the system is stupid."
Mother: "My son is now 18, and he is not reading. He is on a fourth grade level."
[Stossel takes her kid and puts him in the hands of a private learning center: "After only 72 hours of instruction he is raised two grade levels."]
Belgian mother: "I wouldn't send my child to an American public school, not even for a million dollars."
American Student: "One of my teachers tells me he does this for the health benefits."
Stossel: "In the last two years, only two teachers [who are members of the New York state teachers union] have been fired for incompetence."

It's a long piece (40+ minutes) but well worth watching if you can spare the time. Just make sure you watch it early enough in the day, so that you can use the anger and sense of outrage it provokes to good purpose, and take action. If you watch it in the evening, you'll only toss and turn and get no sleep [he says, bleary-eyed from experience].
God help our children who have fallen prey to the povertarian ideals of the teachers unions and their governmental enablers. (and, to be fair, the indifference of those parents who shrug their shoulders in the face of evidence such as this program provides)

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