The New York Times has long been known as “the grey lady” referring to its historical tendency to present a higher-than-usual proportion of copy to graphics (thank you, Wikipedia!). But might that moniker also refer to the thick cloud of ganja smoke fog of excellence through which the Times’ many excellent writers view the world? What else but a serious case of the “excellence goggles” could possibly account for the current state of education “reporting” at the nation’s most excellent newspaper? So reader, if you’re playing along at home, now is the time to strap on your own goggles and gaze in astonished rapture at the edu-landscape the way that it appears to a New York Times writer. Note: If you are wondering why everyone suddenly appears so small, it is because you are looking down on them from the acme of Mt. Merit, home to the select tribe known as homo excellentus as well as a few friends in high places. Here’s a peek at the world as seen through excellence goggles… Continue reading
Grab your magnifying glass, reader, and a heaping helping of fingerprint powder too—we’re going sleuthing. College graduates are the object of today’s inquiry, specifically students who, after attending urban academies of excellence and innovation, go on to attend college at STAGGERING numbers, yet disappear completely when it is time for that beloved tradition: the data round up. While it is an indisputable true fact that students who attend charter schools graduate from college and find outstanding 21st century jobs at rates that shame and embarrass their peers at Low Expectations High, you might be surprised to learn that there is exactly no research documenting that true fact. Well, there is one study. A 2011 report by KIPP Academy found that a mere 30 % of students graduating from KIPP schools actually graduate from college. Continue reading
It is an annual rite of almost unimaginable cruelty. Thousands of young hopefuls attempting to beat long odds. For the lucky few who win this life lottery, there awaits a coveted seat at a no excuses school known for high expectations and some of the nation’s best teachers. But only a tiny minority will get a shot at a better future. I’m talking, of course, about the huge number of Teach for America alumni who are even now applying to the nation’s top law schools. Continue reading
Much of the the reporting on the Chicago teachers strike has been of a surprisingly non-idiotic quality—especially by journalists who took the unusual step of going to Chicago and interviewing people who teach, send their children to public schools or attend such schools themselves.
But what to do if one is a prominent national columnist who is unable to leave one’s desk due to the extremely large number of followers to whom he must tweet throughout the day? Such was the fate of one Nicholas Kristof, who, apparently unable to make time even to Google “Chicago education reform, history of,” (try this experiment yourself at home, bold reader) managed to produce a column at once staggeringly misinformed, condescending and inane. Continue reading
Don’t delay—submit your entries today!
EduShyster is pleased to announce the first ever Bad Education Journalism Contest. At last an opportunity to recognize the best of the worst: stories larded with edu-cliches, based on faulty premises, reliant on questionable “experts,” shot through with silver bullets, full of barely disguised product placements, sprinkled with conflicts of interest and a hint of hypocrisy–and that’s just the front section!
Contest rules and deadline
Simply send a link to the story and the reason you think it is worthy of nomination to email@example.com or tweet @EduShyster by September 15. Winner will receive two complimentary tickets to “Won’t Back Down,” the true story of a group of California parents who fought to turn their local school over to a private charter operator with the aid of a California billionaire. Continue reading