The quote in the title is from Diane Ravitch’s recent piece at the Daily Beast regarding former D.C. schools chancellor Michelle Rhee.
The project of corporate style management as a solution to the country’s educational problems has been beset by fraud just as corporate fraud brought our economy to the brink of collapse two years ago.
The blog Seattle Education 2010 has collected the various stories of fraudulent test results from the schools that were run more like businesses in Atlanta, Houston, New York City, Washington D.C., and Charleston, S.C.
In Atlanta, the investigation has been turned over to law enforcement (Georgia Bureau of Investigation). USA Today has a good article detailing its own investigation into test scores in six states (Arizona, Florida, Ohio, California, Colorado and Michigan) and Washington, D.C.
I’ll end with another quote from Diane Ravitch’s article:
When parents complained that their children’s high scores didn’t make sense, since they were still struggling to do basic math, they were ignored.
This is the real issue – the focus on the tests is a classic example of mistaking the map for the territory. It’s not the test score that’s important. It’s what the test score is supposed to reflect – a student’s abilities. The problem is that when it becomes obvious that the scores don’t reflect the students’ abilities, nobody pays attention, because everyone is being paid based on the test – not the learning.