The highly paid idiots that run the public school system are responsible for test scores nosediving. Here is the opening of an article by Jane Robbins and Emmett McGroarty:
In 2013 Michael Cohen of Achieve, Inc. (an organization integral to developing and marketing the Common Core national standards) testified in New York that Common Core is a long-term education experiment on our children: “The full effects… won’t be seen until an entire cohort of students, from kindergarten through high school graduation, has been effectively exposed to Common Core teaching.” Four years later we may not be seeing the full effects, but heaven help us when we get there.
The most recent red flag comes from the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS), an international assessment of the reading skills of representative samples of fourth-graders. As reported by the Washington Post, the 2016 PIRLS results show U.S. students tumbling from fifth in the world to thirteenth. Scores fell by seven points from those achieved by fourth-graders in 2011, the last time scores were released.
Hmm. What could have happened in schools between 2011 and 2016 that might have affected the academic performance of eight-year-olds? A Harvard education professor speculated that the 2009 recession and that old reliable — poverty — could have been the culprits. Education Secretary and on-again off-again Common Core supporter Betsy DeVos couldn’t identify a specific factor but suggested we need to “rethink school.”
Maybe. But Latvia — one of Europe’s poorer countries — outperformed the U.S. And the school structure that DeVos says we should rethink was pretty much the same in 2016 as in 2011. So what could it be?
Employing Occam’s Razor, we might ask how instruction changed in most states during that time. Fourth-graders in 2011 had had little if any exposure to the Common Core standards, which were released in 2010. Fourth-graders in 2016, though, had had at least several years’ experience with Common Core training. And now we know they can’t read as well as their older siblings read at their age.
Read more: Illinois Family Institute
Image credit: www.illinoisfamily.org.