Can education save the world?

The article “Can teacher evaluation save the world?” by teacher Diane McNally appeared in Times Colonist, Commentary (A13), September 30, 2010. It was a reaction to Los Angeles school authorities “daring to look at teacher ratings” to evaluate student performance. As a psychologist and California educator for 40 years, now retired in Victoria, BC, I can assure you that this periodic reappearance of a desire to improve our public schools is much ado about nothing, as Shakespeare would say. We have been there, we have done it; we have tried merit pay, merit competence, teacher skill development programs, student survey of teacher performance, even the hard to measure variable “the rest of the student’s life has some importance,” as Diane McNally puts it. May be the time has come to think differently about the subject since most of us educators believe that the right education will save the world as Dr. Jean Piaget, the father of European Education ones pronounced!

About my postings, my readers know by now that I tell it like it is. I am not politically correct. I will not tell you what you like to hear. I will tell you the naked truth as is:

1. COSTS: Education that can save the world cannot be expensive. If it costs an arm and a leg, it is not good education. It is a disguised political game. Got it!  Education that makes a difference in the world isn’t about costs! It is about mediocre educators trying to retain political power by those who function well within the corrupt system.

2. CLASS SIZE: Education that can save the world cannot be about class size. If class size is small or large, it is not related to good or bad education.  Pushing for small size classes appeals to ignorant parents and politically motivated unions. Again, mediocre educators try to please parents instead of showing that they do a good job of teaching.

3. TEACHER EVALUATION: Education that can save the world cannot be about teacher evaluation. No test or person can evaluate the effectiveness of a teacher in an unbiased way. As an educator who hired teachers I was required by the board of education to ask applicants irrelevant questions that looked good politically. The more power evaluators have the more corrupted they will become. If you are a fantastic teacher, it reflects badly on the performance of mediocre teachers. Blend in! Most educators blend in for their own good. Teacher evaluation as it is today is a win-win situation for teachers, boards, parents and politicians. It is a losing same for students because mediocre teachers are hired. They act politically correct.

4. THE SOLUTION: Education that can save the world cannot be political. It cannot be about money, class size or teacher evaluation. It must be about teacher training and personality. If you read my books, postings on the Young World Conference in London, and other events, and my responses to inquirers on my blogs, Google, Facebook and Twitter, you will see the C-MOR concept appearing many times. C-MOR is the Piagetian-Skinnerian-Pavlovian way to train teachers. Dr. Piaget’s cognitive learning, Dr. Skinner’s Behavioral living or Dr. Pavlov emotional conditioning is a new world order rejected by a corrupt old world order. Can teacher evaluation save the world? I am sorry, Diane McNally, the answer is No. Let the good times roll.

5. Next time I will talk to you about something important alluded to in McNally’s article. If you are in the Media and you want to quote me please wait until my next segment on the cost and benefit of special education.

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