The Fraser Institute (of asshattery) has released their latest "report" on the Elementary schools in BC, and again we can see their motivation live and in action.
They have been doing these "report cards" for a few years now, and it is not out of the goodness of their little black hearts.....
For its part, the Fraser Institute couldn't care less what the teachers say. It knows the report-card program is working the way it intends, which is to undermine public confidence in the public system. The wealthy, who send their children to private schools, ask, "Why should I pay for the public system, especially the failing parts?" And the poor ask, "I'm not getting a fair deal from the public system. Is there something else?"
Families are already buying houses near high-ranked public schools if they can afford to, or bussing their kids if they're fortunate enough to gain access to "better" schools. And divorcing parents fighting in the courts for custody of their children are citing the school rankings as a reason why the parent who lives near a high-ranked school should get custody.
The FI and it's extremely wealthy backers would like to open up the education system to the free markets.
In their great rush to appear all non partisan and "fair" they even gave the polygamous school in Bountiful top marks....
The FI is not the only right wing think tank working on grading schools in Canada...In a non partisan and completely unaffiliated way of course.....
On June 1, the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies, Atlantic Canada's market fundamentalist think-tank, will host former Florida governor Jeb Bush at the institute's 15th anniversary dinner in Moncton. Bush will recount how he imposed school choice and rigorous testing on Florida's school children. He probably won't talk about the seven decades-long relationship between the Bush and McGraw families. The McGraws own CTB McGraw-Hill, one of the largest developers of school tests in the U.S. and a prime beneficiary of Jeb's brother, George W. Bush's No Child Left Behind law, which mandated universal testing and healthy profits for the testing companies.
In case anyone missed it? Jeb Bush was behind a draconian bill in Florida that was all set to punish teachers financially and demoralize them and the kids. It was vetoed by the Governor.
It would have also made a LOT more money for a company like......McGraw-Hill that provides the teach to the test papers.
How bad is education in Canada? And why would we want to go down the road the US has gone? So we can rank 28th in the world?
Out of the thirty three countries on the list, Canada places 3rd on reading, 5th in maths, and 2nd in science.
he US: 33rd in reading, 27th in maths, and 22nd in science.
I covered a lot of these items in this post a few months back.....Canadian Conservatives in a race to the bottom.
The media in Canada repeats a lot of the stuff the think tanks produce as though it is valid information. Indeed, some of the thinks tanks "fellows" and board members and el presidente's are actually paid by media outlets. Nice free press for the funders of these organizations hey?
Give us your old propaganda! AND GET CASH BACK!
In the real world we would call that a conflict of interest. But since this brave new world that is being crafted behind the scenes for us, behind a curtain of shiny petroleum laced astroturf and "non partisan" think tanks, the truth and accountability are long gone.
So why do they do it? Ranking schools is a wedge issue designed to widen the gap between the well-off and the rest of society. The wealthy ask "Why should I pay for the public system, especially for the failing parts?" And the poor ask "I'm not getting a fair deal from the public system. Is there something else?"
That's not how Peter Cowley, the institute's director of school performance studies, explains it. Instead he points to little Tyee Elementary deep in east Vancouver at Knight and Kingsway. It ranks eleventh best in the city, ahead of upper-middle-class schools like Shaughnessy and Kerrisdale. Cowley says that Tyee "bucks the trend." It is a crucial result in the report card's quest for legitimacy.
Cookie cutter schools, with cookie cutter standards. For a future generation of good little consumers who will not think too hard, but will work for $5 a day.