Saturday, December 1, 2012

NGSS propaganda

Next Generation Science Standards for 
Today’s Students and 
Tomorrow’s Workforce 

There are a lot of good reasons to develop a framework for science education. 
Creating a workforce is not one of them.

So why is it there?

Next Generation Science Standards. 
For States. By States.
The Next Generation Science Standards are not "by states"--they are by a small collection of groups with varying motives, led by Achieve, Inc., funded by multiple major foundations, run by a handful of governors and major CEO's.
So why is it there?

The photograph shows a safe young man of color, collared shirt with a tie, adjusting a Bunsen burner, with a test tube rack holding various colored fluids, with the banner "Add Your Voice of Support."

It does not need our support--it has the force of money and power behind it, railroading itw way into local boards of education.
So why is it there?
To give the semblance of a democratic process?

The National Science Teachers Association has been listed as a "partner" in this endeavor. The NSTA folks, however,  "have serious and extensive concerns about the current content and architecture of the NGSS."
Why is that not there?

Whatever the end result of this process, let's be clear on a few things:
  • This is an effort led by a small cadre of politicians and business folks who know about as much about the natural world as I do about how Libor rates are calculated.
  • This is not a democratic nor grass roots movement.
  • The NSTA has "extensive concerns" after the last draft released.
In the next few weeks we are going to see major news outlets spouting nothing but positive news about the grand achievement of Achieve and company--the power folks are exceedingly good at this kind of stuff.

I teach science to help children develop critical thinking skills.
Don't allow the NGSS propaganda to slide past yours.

The last round of public comment was too brief for substantive input from the science teacher community, and the draft was quickly removed. If anybody wants a copy, email me and I'll send the file.


Quilbilly-Todd Miller said...

I have wondered the same thing. Where the hell did these come from and why? When I started teaching fifteen years ago, Washington brought out their science standards to align with the state wide test. They were remarkably as bad as the released draft of the NGSS and underwent endless revisions and name changes to to point that you need a flow chart if you actually want to follow their evolution. (I don't) We are now awaiting the release of NGSS as the be all and end all.

doyle said...

Dear Quilbilly,

Brass 'nads and a pocketful full of gold get you far in this culture.

I keep hoping the NGSS folks offer me big bucks to go away. I won't, of course, I can't be bought, but I'd be flattered by the effort.

I just want to teach science. They just want to destroy my school. We have conflicting goals, it seems....

Quilbilly-Todd Miller said...

I enjoy your posts and I read your one today about paddling around Cape May. My daughter is currently living in Cape May doing shellfish research. Is that where you teach? She will be leaving soon to take a three month horse logging class in Maine. She has eclectic interests. Todd

doyle said...

We're trying to get our butts permanently down in Cape May--we have a place down there, bought in anticipation of getting a job there.

Then the bottom fell out.

But we're there just about anytime we don;t need to be up here.