Saturday, March 1, 2008

On the Way to: McJobs USA
through the
Courtesy of our Politicians

Dear Legislative Leaders, school board directors, news media outlets etc.???,

In Washington we hear that our elementary teachers are weak in math content.

WA has an incredible amount of professional development required for new teachers to stay certified. What change do we see as a result? None - still teachers weak in math content.

There is no thrust to have teachers know any additional math content. It is all methods courses.

To advance into a math decision-making position in the Seattle School District the requirements though unwritten appear to be as follows:

1... have little math content knowledge

2... be unable to do math problems at a pre-Calculus level

3... Spout volumes of reform math nonsense

4... be unable to even find relevant statistics much less apply them.

5... be morally debased enough to allow many professionals to continue riding the NSF gravy train to the detriment of students.

6... After enacting plans over the last 10 years that widened the achievement gap constantly over that time, have enough unmitigated gall to proclaim we are all about closing the achievement gap for children of color and the poor.

7... Advocate for materials and push through to the multi-million dollar adoptions of materials that will produce more of #6.

8... Be conniving and dishonest enough to bury the relevant data so as to present cherry-picked numbers in support of continuing this hoax called Reform Math. --May 2007 Elementary School Math Adoption

9... In the words of Don Orlich's book title be 100% for continuing:
School Reform : The Great American Brain Robbery

10... Have insufficient curiosity to look outside your own shadow. In case someone thrust relevant data into your shadow, have insufficient knowledge of statistics to be able to recognize Sh** from Shinola. {historical reference to a shoe polish trademarked in 1929 no longer in existence - US math competence appears headed to a similar place}

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WWII fact: The Mighty HMS Hood sank in less than 30 minutes - some big things go down fast.

Side note in 1983 A Nation at Risk was published (25 years ago)

High Tech Executives have repeatedly testified about the math knowledge gap that our country faces. Industries are blamed for moving jobs offshore -- often by the politician class who failed to act.

US produces 65,000 to 70,000 Engineers annually.
Perhaps 15,000 to 20,000 might be IT (Information Tech) professionals (and how many of these were US educated in grades K-12?).

Cisco plans to hire 360,000 IT in the next 5 years.
Cisco must go offshore these folks do not exist in the USA.

Bill Gates has publicly stated that the best Engineering school in the world is the Indian Institute of Technology -- where could Cisco find enough IT professionals? -- not in the USA many of our kids lives are determined in grades K-3 -- The focus and thrust of things in Math education will see our nation rapidly sinking into the Sea of McJobs.

No surprise Cisco is headed to India, as the politicians can not even locate a target for blame much less correct the problem at it's source.

In the last few years there has been a tremendous change - most Indians would rather stay home and attend the best school in the world and stay at home rather than come to the US. Indians will no longer have to come to the USA to see $100,000+ jobs - Welcome to McJobs USA.


Just another voice crying outside the large wilderness of school reform.

See attached PISA scores for USA's current math prowess internationally among 15 year olds.

Danaher M. Dempsey, Jr.

Teacher at Alternative for Individuals High School
in the Clover Park School District

NCLB Highly Qualified in Math, Chemistry, and Science


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