Education “Reform” a Trojan Horse for Privatization

by Project Censored
Published: Last Updated on

In January 2012, Fairtest, the National Center for Fair and Open Testing, reported that a decade of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) policies had actually slowed the rate of education progress.  The report, “NCLB’s Lost Decade for Education Progress,” concluded that the law had “failed badly both in terms of its own goals and more broadly.”  The Fairtest findings are based on data from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and dozens of independent studies.

One of NCBL’s most outspoken critics, Diane Ravitch sees current corporate efforts to reform public education as an attack on it.  “Public education today is the target of a well-coordinated, well-funded campaign to privatize as many schools as possible, particularly in cities. This campaign claims it wants great teachers in every classroom, but its rhetoric demoralizes teachers, and reduces the status of the education profession,” Ravitch told a Los Angeles audience in February 2012. “There is no historical comparison to the current movement for privatization and de-professionalization.”

These reform efforts include President Obama’s Race To the Top program, which Ravitch calls “No Child Left Behind 2.0.”  Race To the Top entails more high stakes testing, more school privatization, and closing of schools with large numbers of low-performing students.  As Ravitch notes, “A race has one winner and many losers. That’s not what we want for our children.”

Instead, the core rhetoric of reform features testing and accountability, the very management principles that have been the status quo in American education for 20 years.  The driving logic for such reform is profits.  “Wall Street hedge fund managers are heavily invested in this,” Ravitch argued, “This is really an issue of the 1 percent vs. the 99 percent… The more privatization, the less people will work together as communities.”

Title: Education “Reform” Vs. the 99%

Author: Paul Rosenberg

Publication: Random Lengths News

Date of Publication: 10-23 February 2012



Faculty Evaluators: Peter Phillips, Sonoma State University; Andy Lee Roth, Project Censored