Slouching Toward Idiocracy

There was a nominee for the United States Supreme Court named Robert Bork. In effect, he didn’t get appointed because of his percieved conservative leanings as he is a proponent of interpeting the U.S. Constitution asking about “original intent” of the authors. It was in all the papers.

He wrote a book titled “Slouching Toward Gomorrah.” The idea was that the United States was redefining what individual rights truly were and moving towars a state in which everybody needs to be equal. You can make money writing books if you were once in all the papers.

Well, the Dallas Independent School District just announced some “grading standards” that are used by all schools within said district. I live in an area within the boundary of the Lewisville Independent School District…so, ordinarily, this would just be a headline in today’s paper that I might skip over.

However, I have a daughter that attends a school within the jurisdiction of the D.I.S.D.

Here’s the deal:

The district’s chief academic officer and staff got together to create some academic guidelines to help make grading “uniform” across the district. In other words, some schools/teachers might grade harder than others (or more lenient than others), and it would be good to ensure that every student has the same academic chance. Not a bad goal, really.

As usual, it comes down to how you want to implement structure to achieve that goal.

So, the brainiacs on that staff came up with such jewels as:

*A teacher will be required to accept work submitted after a deadline with NO PENALTY given to the student.

*Homework grades that will lower the grade of any student must be thrown out.

*Before a student can be given a zero on any assignment or test, the teacher must conctact the student’s parents, and then must offer re-tests or give extensions.

Seriously.

These are part of the guidelines.

Now, this won’t really affect my child. She’s certainly a dedicated & motivated student so all of this won’t really come into play for us. If it does, there will be a series of meetings with Kid1. Serious meetings. But it won’t. Thankfully, the rank & file teachers are livid. I imagine this will all change.

And, the academic officer actually said this: “The purpose behind it is to ensure fair and credible evaluation of learning – from grade to grade and school to school,” said Denise Collier, the district’s chief academic officer.”

Well, Denise, I think it’s fair to say that if you keep dumbing down the education process, you won’t have to worry about students getting their name in the paper because they weren’t nominated for the Supreme Court.

They’ll get their names in the paper for other, less impressive, reasons.

And they won’t write books because they’ve never read one…and you’ll give them a diploma that’s based on “participation” rather than “fulfillment of requirements.”

Get it together, D.I.S.D. Seriously.

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