We have seen the future, and it sucks.

No Child Left Behind

10th February 2017

Read it.

Some time ago, around the time hat Congress passed No Child Left Behind, a reporter asked me what I thought its effect would be. I said I didn’t think it would have any.

Judging from the NAEP long-term trend scores for 17-year olds, I was right. They have hardly changed in more than 40 years. Naturally that’s what you would want to look at, rather than the scores for 4th graders or 8th graders. If they go up while graduates stagnate, it doesn’t matter. Only an idiot could get excited over that kind of sterile improvement – but since nearly everyone involved with this question is an idiot, they go on and on about it.

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