1. True or False–More than 1/3 of Americans aged 25-29 have a bachelor’s degree.

2. What is the ratio of poor adults (from households making less than $35,000) that have a bachelor’s degree by age 24?
a) 1 in 5
b) 1 in 12
c) 1 in 17
d) 1 in 23

3. What is the ratio for those coming from the richest families ($85,000 a year)?
a) 1 in 2
b) 1 in 5
c) 1 in 8
d) 1 in 12

4. True or False–Nationally, high school graduation rates are increasing.

5. True or False–More than 40 percent of students graduating from America’s high schools are unprepared to deal with either college courses or anything but an entry-level job in the workplace according to a recent National Governor’s Association Report.

Oy. You can guess the answers, can’t you? False (29% do), c, a, False, True.

Two points. First, Ted Sizer from The Red Pencil:

“The best predictor of a child’s educational success always has been and still is the economic and social class of his family rather than the school that he or she happens to attend. The schools as they presently function appear, save at the well publicized margins, rarely to countervail the accidents of family, wealth and residence. “Success,” as conventionally defined, and ultimately graduation thus depend largely on the chance of birth and income, embarrassing a democracy that pretends to offer equal educational opportunities for all.”

Second, when are we going to look at these problems and admit that this model doesn’t work any longer, that it hasn’t for most Americans for the last 50 years, and that no amount of testing and forced regurgitation is going to fix them?

I know I tend to the dramatic at times…sorry. But there is so much change coming down the pipe right now, not just from technology, but from other countries and economies that seem to be figuring it out more quickly than we are. There is no innovation in testing. There is no creativity in standardizing curriculum to fit a model that is no longer relevant.

Double oy. Maybe I’m just grumpy today…

(Sources: NY Times, Detroit News.)