Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Mike Petrilli defines "radical."

Ok.  It's officially old news that the Lee County school board in Florida first voted to opt out of standardized testing and then voted to opt back in. How did this happen?  I don't know and I'll let others speculate.

However, what has me going are the ridiculous comments made by Mike Petrilli in the September 2nd issue of Florida Today.  While cheerleading for the opt in crowd, Petrilli uttered,

"We all know that there are downsides to standardized testing, that there have been some unintended consequences, but saying that we should stop testing entirely, that we shouldn't even provide information to the public about results, is a very radical idea."

Really?  Radical?  Why is it "radical" to "stop testing entirely?"  Is there anything positive associated with high stakes standardized testing other than the large amounts of cash the industry generates and then donates to shoddy think tanks like the Thomas B. Fordham Institute?

And this stupid idea that the "public" demands results needs a serious reconsideration.  Wasn't Lee County school board's vote to opt out and all of the hours of testimony from the "public" in support of opt out , the "public" saying, "we don't want useless and harmful testing practices to continue with our children?"

So that's what Petrilli considers "radical."  It is "radical" when communities reclaim their public schools and demand harmful testing practices stop.  It is "radical" to stop wasting tax dollars on testing companies,  It is "radical" to stop testing companies from funding think tanks that promote education reform—test and punish.

No, I think what Mr. Petrilli really thinks is "radical" is when the "public" attempts to end his miserable career as lead cheerleader for a failed education reform policy.

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