Wednesday, October 7, 2020

CURMUDGUCATION: CAP: It's the School System's Fault

CURMUDGUCATION: CAP: It's the School System's Fault

CAP: It's the School System's Fault

The Center for American Progress (CAP) is nominally a left-tilted thinky tank, but they have always been solidly on the side of reformsterism, backing charter schools and relentlessly stumping for the Common Core.

They're also fans of the narrow reformster view of education as a mill for churning out meat widgets, and here they are at it again in a post from mid-September (you know, about ten years ago) entitled "Preparing American Students for the Workforce of the Future." It's a pervasive reform idea--that the point of school is as vocational prep (and college is just vocational prep for higher-paying jobs).

And yes-- if schools were cranking out graduates who were completely unemployable, that would be a disservice to those students. But the notion that the years 1 through 18 (or even 22) should be focused simply on making yourself useful to your future employer is such a cramped, meager, joyless, shrunken version of what a human life can be-- Well, I could go on and on, but let's settle for this--no parents with resources to provide their child with more would settle for thirteen (or fourteen or fifteen) years of meat widget training.

But CAP leaps right in with "The United States has failed to prepare all students for college and their careers" and follows up by citing TNTP's Opportunity Myth, one of those non-research "reports" that reformy groups crank out so that other groups can cite them as if they contain actual research. I've discussed it at length elsewhere, so I'm not getting into it here--short form: it's not a good sign.

CAP throws in some chicken littling about the pandemic's effects on the US healthcare, economy and workforce, noting that Black and brown people are worst hit, and they're not wrong. But their CONTINUE READING: 
CURMUDGUCATION: CAP: It's the School System's Fault