A few weeks ago, a reader asked me to comment on this paper:

http://www.nber.org/papers/w20792

 

It says, in summary, that students in schools subject to charter “takeovers,” who were “grandfathered in,” saw substantial academic gains. That is, they did not enter the charters by lottery but were kept enrolled after the school turned from public to charter. The two districts studied were Néw Orleans and Boston.

 

I sent the link to Kristen Buras, who spent ten years studying charters in Néw Orleans.

 

This was her response:

 

Hello Diane:

 

I am astounded by this paper’s assertions. To my knowledge, there is no foundation for the claim that New Orleans students attending a closed school have the right to be “grandfathered” into the newly chartered school.

 

First, I am unaware of any such legislative mandate (and if there is, it’s certainly not enforced).

 

Second, I am very aware that the reality on the ground is just the opposite.

 

When charters takeover, they gut the entire school of teachers and students and then redesign to their liking through an array of methods.

 

Time and again, the community has complained in public forums that claims about charter operators “transforming” schools in New Orleans are bogus because the charter operators rarely serve students who originally attended the school.

 

In fact, to avoid such a burden and to start anew, charter operators in New Orleans often open the school with only select grade levels offered, generally the grade levels exempt from state testing, and slowly build from there. The paper’s authors have built on a model disassociated from reality, but I’m sure there are lots of fancy formulas in the paper that look really impressive.

 

All my best,

 

Kristen

 

Director | Urban South Grassroots Research Collective

 

Kristen L. Buras
Associate Professor of Educational Policy
Educational Policy Studies
Georgia State University
P.O. Box 3977
Atlanta, Georgia 30302-3977
United States
kburas@gsu.edu

Renowned educator Condoleeza Rice is taking charge of Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Excellence while Bush runs for President.

Former Secretary of State Rice established her credentials in K-12 education when she co-chaired a task force with Joel Klein at the Council on Foreign Relations, which concluded that public education in America was so dreadful that it threatened our national security.

Jeff Nichols is a leader of the Opt Out movement in New York City. He and his wife Anne Stone have opted their children out of state tests, organized other parents, written articles, testified before officials, and raised their voices whenever and wherever possible. Both are professors of music, and they understand how little a standardized test can measure of a child’s talent and potential.

Jeff Nichols and Anne Stone are hereby added to the blog’s honor roll for their fearless advocacy for American children.

Jeff Nichols wrote the following letter to Senator Alexander, who is chair of the Senate committee that intends to rewrite No Child Left Behind:

Dear Senator Alexander,

Your committee stands charged with drawing to a close an episode of national insanity that unfortunately has considerable precedent. As in the 1950s, when fear of the Soviet Union induced an assault on our fundamental rights of free speech and freedom of association during Joseph McCarthy’s communist witch hunts, so in the past few years fear of the rising economic might of China and of global competition generally has led to another equally violent assault on a basic democratic principle: the right of the American people to determine for themselves the methods and policies that govern how they educate their own children.

In the name of saving those children from economic ruin at the hands of supposedly better-prepared rivals in newly developed nations, we are destroying the educational foundation of our greatness. Throughout the twentieth century, American public education was characterized by diversity and local control. Fifty state systems loosely oversaw thousands of local districts that possessed great authority to determine curriculum, assessment, hiring practices and many other basic functions of running schools. That is to speak only of the public schools; added to that picture of diversity were innumerable private and parochial schools.

The result was the rise of a free, wealthy, powerful and culturally vibrant nation virtually without parallel in the history of the world.

This is not a coincidence. Our pluralistic, decentralized, diverse education system is a primary reason science, business and the arts have been able to produce an unending stream of great discoveries and innovations that have benefited all humanity.

Yet our federal education leaders want to change all that, and they have used the instrument of high-stakes testing to force the change they want on the nation. Arne Duncan regularly sings the praises of China’s test-driven system and predicts dire consequences if we do not match their achievement. Through the Common Core and associated federal testing mandates, he is well on his way to achieving his goal.

Senator Alexander, have you read the writings of Yong Zhao, the great Chinese-American education scholar who has written definitive rebuttals of Mr. Duncan’s claims? I cite only one fact I learned from Professor Zhao’s latest book, Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Dragon? Why China Has the Best (and Worst) Education System in the World.

Zhao quotes from the 2013 book The Pathology of Chinese Education by Peking University professor Zheng Yefu, who wrote:

No one, after 12 years of Chinese education, has any chance to receive a Nobel prize, even if he or she went to Harvard, Yale, Oxford or Cambridge for college…. Out of the one billion people who have been educated in Mainland China since 1949, there has been no Nobel prize winner…. This forcefully testifies to the power of education in destroying creativity on behalf of Chinese society.

Zhao, who lived under the Chinese system in his early years, points out what anyone should realize after half a moment’s reflection: China’s education system is designed to systematically suppress original, independent thought. That’s the primary task of education systems in ALL authoritarian societies.

Bill Gates, one of the chief forces behind the current drive to shape American education in the image of China’s through relentless high-stakes testing, has decried the uncontrolled diversity of American education. He has called the myriad state standards and associated diversity of educational approaches that prevailed before the Common Core “cacophonous.”

Well, I say this to Bill Gates, Rupert Murdoch, Eli Broad, Michael Bloomberg — some of the members of the “billionaire’s boys club” that Diane Ravtich has accused of mounting a coup in American education:

When everyone has a voice, it gets noisy. You may call that cacophony. I call it democracy. Get used to it. You and the politicians you back may have exploited the recent Great Recession to scare states into trading their sovereign authority over education for money, but the people of those states are rising up. We are going to retake control over the education of our children. Ordinary parents and teachers will reinstate democratic governance of public schools in this nation, asserting the same rights already enjoyed by the elite (including our president) who opt out of unconstitutional federal mandates by sending their children to private schools — schools where the meaning of accountability has not been perverted beyond recognition, schools where teachers and parents are accountable only to each other as they strive, according only to their best understanding, to do what’s best for the children they are jointly raising.

Public school parents and teachers will claim the same right, with or without the help of the U.S. Congress. If necessary we will do so through civil disobedience. My wife and I will submit our two children to no state-mandated standardized tests; we have joined tens of thousands of parents in our state of New York, defying both the federal government and the state authorities who caved to federal pressure, betraying our children to serve the interests of politicians and their corporate backers.

As in the McCarthy era, there is no middle ground here, Senator Alexander. You and your colleagues in Congress will either stop scapegoating teachers for the effects of poverty, and restore to parents, teachers and local communities their rightful control over public education, or you will go down in history as enablers of one of the most destructive series of laws and policies of our time: “No Child Left Behind” and its equally flawed sequel “Race to the Top.”

I call on you to work tirelessly to remove all federal efforts to control curriculum, assessment and teaching methods in our public schools. Leave it to us citizens, who are uniting across the political spectrum to defy illegitimate federal education dictates, and who you can rest assured will not only see to it that our children are “college and career ready,” but also fully prepared to know and assert their inalienable rights in a democratic society.

Sincerely,

Jeff Nichols

If you think that international test scores are a valuable indicator of educational success (I don’t), you should read this article. When poverty is recognized as an important variable, the scores of U.S. students are among the best in the world.

I don’t consider international test scores to be an accurate meassure of school quality. I am persuaded by Yong Zhao’s work that high test scores may be the result of relentless test prep, which distorts education and discourages creativity.

Peggy Robertson, one of the leading figures in the Opt Out movement, has compiled a list of teachers who refuse to give the mandated tests, as a matter of conscience.

 

She plans to add to the list as more teachers step up and refuse to obey what they believe is an unjust law.

Jennifer Rickert is an elementary school teacher in upstate Néw York. She loves teaching. She has taught for 22 years. She tried her best to implement the Common Core. She was enthusiastic about doing it right. But when she read the guidelines for the Spring 2015 tests, she concluded her students were being set up for failure. She can’t do it.

She explains why in this post.

She details each of her objections to the test, including the fact that some passages may be written at a level suitable for eleventh-graders (her students are age 11 and 12). And students will be asked to choose the “right answer” when some answers are “plausible” but not the right answer.

She summarizes why she will not give the test:

“In summary, we are going to ask 11-year-olds to read and comprehend passages that are taken from higher grades, some at 5 years above their level, with controversial and provocative language, based on abstract literature and historical documents that the students have not learned about yet, and choose an answer from several plausible choices? We are going to have our students spend nine hours of seat time, allowing extra time for our Special Education students, on these inappropriate tests? (Add another nine hours for math.)

“And after all is said and done, we will reduce each child to a number: 4, 3, 2, or 1, based on their performance, providing the teachers and parents with little to no information about what they can and cannot do?

“No. No, I cannot.”

United Opt Out sent a letter to Senator Lamar Alexander, who chairs the HELP (Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions) Committee in the Senate. Senator Alexander intends to rewrite No Child Left Behind (NCLB), which was originally called the Elementary and Secondary Education Act when it was first passed in 1965. At that time, the law was passed to send federal aid to poor districts. It said nothing about testing and accountability. But NCLB turned the federal law into a high-stakes testing mandate. Senator Alexander conducted his first hearing on January 21 and plans another hearing on January 27. Senator Alexander proposed two options in  his draft legislation: option 1 was to replace annual testing with grade span testing; option 2 was to keep annual high-stakes testing (the status quo). UOO is opposed to high-stakes testing in the federal law, period. (So am I.)

 

Here is UOO’s letter:

 

 

United Opt Out Public Letter to Senator Alexander

 

 

 
January 22, 2015

 

Dear Senator Alexander,

 

There is a great deal of discussion about where education leaders and organizations “stand” when it comes to the latest revision for ESEA titled Every Child Ready for College or Career Act of 2015. In response, the organizers of United Opt Out (UOO) find that we stand between Scylla and Charybdis, between the proverbial rock and a hard place.

 

In your bill you pose the question of support for Option 1, a reduction in testing to grade span, or Option 2, which continues the current testing nightmare; we support neither. We find many items in the 400 page document too egregious and insupportable even though we do accept the notion of “grade span testing,” preferably via random sampling, as an alternative to what is in place now.

 

While we understand why many of our respected colleagues have shown support for Option 1 in your bill, we cannot endorse either. This is because both options are tucked neatly inside a larger bill that promotes the expansion of charters and other policies destructive overall to the well-being of students, public schools, and communities. Another reason we are reluctant, no matter what enticing promises are included therein, is due to those who lobbied for this bill in 2013: The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, Alliance for Excellent Education and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which has immense ties to ALEC.

 

While we are inclined to support H.R. 4172 – Student Testing Improvement and Accountability Act sponsored by Rep. Chris Gibson and Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, which also calls for grade span testing, we would like to see additional safeguards included against possible punitive (i.e. high stakes) state policies. Also, as stated above, we prefer random sampling. In our assessment, H.R.4172 does not go far enough to protect children, educators, and communities against state policies that are damaging in nature in spite of good intent. To elaborate, this bill requires those tests be administered at least once during: (1) grades 3 through 5, (2) grades 6 through 9, and (3) grades 10 through 12. However, “under H.R. 4172, the states would retain the ability to exceed federal testing requirements if they seek to do so.” In other words, students could be tested just as much as they are now if states choose to do so. The bill is not a guaranteed protection against over-testing and its punitive consequences; it’s just a hope. We believe that hope alone is not sufficient.

 

Make no mistake, Senator Alexander, we understand fully that you are a supporter of the privatization of public schools. Despite that fact, your bill and Gibson’s may be preferable to some who are against the privatization of public schools because they contain the possibility of being better than the existing federal and state policies. However, they are not appealing to many, in particular states that have suffered the negative impact of high stakes testing. Furthermore, we can’t see how either of the current bills proposed are the “solution” to problems such as equity in funding, re-segregation, compromised pedagogy, data mining, or the intrusion of corporate interests – to cite from a list of many – that continue to fester in public education.

 

We agree that education decisions should be decided in state legislative and local district bodies, but safeguards should be in place to ensure horrific policies such as over testing and attaching results to student, teacher, school, and community worthiness are not pushed through state and district legislative bodies. Your bill and Gibson’s include no such safeguards for polices that have been detrimental to the non-white, special needs, immigrant, and impoverished communities.

 

UOO and most other human rights organizations will vigorously oppose ANY state level measures that sanction the following:

 

Increase standardized testing even if it’s under “state control”

 

Support using high stakes to make decisions about students, educators, school buildings, or communities

 

Use of sanctions such as “shuts downs” or “turn overs” based on test data of any kind

 

Display favoritism toward increased charters and state voucher programs

 

Facilitate data mining and collection of private student information

 

Engage in sweet insider deals between state policy makers and corporations or testing companies using tax-payer dollars and at the expense of safety, quality and equity in public education

 

Therefore, we demand greater safety, equity and quality for ALL schools and that includes the elimination of ALL standardized -paper based or computer adaptive testing – that redirects tax-based funding for public education to corporations and is punitive or damaging to children, teachers, schools, and communities.

 

We will not accept ANY bill until the following criteria are included:

 

Increased resources for the inclusion of local, quality curricular adoptions devoid of “teaching to the test”

 

Quality, creative, authentic, and appropriate assessment measures for general students, special needs, and English language learners that are sustainable and classroom teacher-created

 

Smaller teacher/student ratios

 

Wrap-around social programs, arts, physical education programs, and creative play recess

 

Career-focused magnet programs

 

Additionally, we demand legislation that supports a broad and deep system-wide examination of the power structures that perpetuate poverty-level existence for millions of Americans.

 

To conclude, we find ourselves having to choose between being shot in the head and being shot in the foot. For now, we choose neither. Instead we call for continued revisions of current legislation to include the items and protections outlined in this letter. We thank you for this opportunity to share our sentiments and our voice.

 

Sincerely,

 

United Opt Out Administrators:

 

 

Rosemarie Jensen
Denisha Jones
Morna McDermott
Peggy Robertson
Ruth Rodriquez
Tim Slekar
Ceresta Smith

 

 

Richard Kahlenberg reviews a new book by Harvard law professor Lani Guinier, who argues that the SAT and other standardized tests for college admission are antithetical to democracy. Jeffrey Snyder of Carleton College says that Guinier’s arguments are misleading.

 

Guinier argues that the tests are reflections of affluence, not merit or character. They serve to reward those who are already privileged.

 

Kahlenberg writes:

 

“‘Democratic merit,’ Guinier explains, goes far beyond examining test scores to look at the skills and commitment among student applicants that our democracy requires. Invoking Harvard economist Amartya Sen, Guinier writes that merit is ‘an incentive system that rewards the actions a society values.’ Today, she says, our society should value people who combine two sets of attributes: (1) knowing how to solve problems, which requires not just cognitive skills but also the ability to collaborate with others, and to think creatively; and (2) a “commitment to building a better society for more people” rather than just pursuing one’s own selfish ends.

 

“Guinier argues that the heavy reliance on standardized test scores in college admissions is deeply problematic on many levels. The tests are designed not to tell whether an individual will contribute to the strength of our democracy but only how he or she will perform academically in the freshman year. “If all we cared about is how well you do in your first year of college, we would have college programs that last only one year, right?” she quips. And SATs don’t even explain first-year grades very well, she says, citing economist Jesse Rothstein’s finding that SAT scores explain 2.7 percent of the variance in freshman grades….”

 

“Finally, Guinier writes, the testocracy “values perfect scores but ignores character.” Indeed, because doing well on the SAT is seen as a product of talent and hard work, the winners often lack the sense that they owe anyone else anything. The old inherited elite sometimes recognized that the accident of birth triggered a need to give back. “The new elite, on the other hand, feels that it has earned its privileges based on intrinsic, individual merit,” Guinier writes, and therefore feel no “obligation or shame.”

 

Now that the SAT will be aligned with the Common Core, both directed by the same person, David Coleman, we can expect it to become “harder” and thus even more reflective of family wealth.

 

Jeffrey Snyder says that Guinier is wrong. Snyder says that critics of testing miss the point. All standardized tests favor those who have had greater opportunities because they are better educated and better prepared.

 

He writes:

 

The SAT, Guinier maintains, reflects the “values and culture” of “white, upper middle-class” students. Many scholars in the field of education readily endorse this claim. I know because I used to be one of them. Two years ago, though, after reading through the empirical research carried out by psychologists and psychometricians for a course I created on standardized testing and American education, I concluded that the charges of bias do not stand up to closer scrutiny. The overwhelming majority of leading measurement experts contest the notion that the SAT systematically underestimates the academic skills and knowledge of poor students and students of color. Indeed, Guinier is unable to provide a single specific example of racial or class bias on the test. Consider the fact that Asian Americans significantly outperform whites on the SAT. Is there nothing distinctive about the cultural heritage of Americans of Asian descent? Following Guinier’s logic, the tens of thousands of high-scoring first- and second-generation immigrants from India and China somehow share the “values and culture” of upper middle-class whites, even if they are working-class or their parents do not speak English as a native language.

 

The SAT is not the only measure where money matters. As University of California, Santa Barbara Professor Emerita Rebecca Zwick has shown, every measure of academic achievement is at least in part a “wealth test,” with higher-income students enjoying consistent performance advantages over their less well-off peers. On average, more affluent students have higher scores on annual tests mandated by the No Child Left Behind legislation; on tests with no coaching available such as the National Assessment of Educational Progress; as well as on high-school exit exams such as New York’s Regents Examination. The same goes for grade-point-averages and the ACT. So no matter the achievement metric, as a group, more affluent students always do better.

 

Just to be clear, for Guinier and many of the other most vociferous critics of standardized testing, the SAT is a meaningless metric. The only skills it measures are those necessary to succeed on the SAT itself. Access to test prep allows students to learn how to “game” the test and a white, upper-middle class cultural background somehow provides a key to unlock the test’s otherwise mystifying content. In her mind, nothing separates the high from the low-scoring students, apart from bank account balances and the color of their skin. But while the SAT has many noteworthy flaws (the essay section, for instance, is farcical and an insult to the craft of writing), it does a decent job fulfilling its central purpose, which is to measure “college-readiness.” Those students who do well on the SAT really are more likely to succeed in college than those who do poorly.

 

The school of thought that deems the SAT meaningless is deeply misguided. If you care about expanding educational opportunity for poor students and students of color, charges of class and racial bias turn out to be red herrings. And test prep is the biggest red herring of all. College admissions tests, by and large, register rather than create socio-economic and racial disparities. Weeks or even months of test prep are dwarfed by the lifetime of accrued advantages associated with wealth. Think high-quality nutrition and healthcare, as well as access to museums, travel, and extended social and professional networks. Consider too a dozen plus years of attending the best public schools or private schools with well-qualified teachers and a rigorous high school curriculum that includes a rich array of foreign language offerings, Advanced Placement courses and extracurricular activities. By the time they are seventeen, more affluent students are more likely to succeed on the SAT—and in college—because they have received better educations than their less well-off peers.

 

To deny the real differences in the linguistic, mathematical and analytical skills between the typical low-income student and the typical high-income student is inexcusable. The test prep industry and “biased tests” make for easy targets—but they distract us from the much more important inequalities that are embedded in our racially and economically stratified K–12 educational system. Across the country, for example, poor students and students of color are disproportionately overrepresented in the lowest academic tracks, and disproportionately underrepresented in “gifted and talented programs” and honors and Advanced Placement classes. We should concentrate on students’ broader educational trajectories, rather than obsessively honing in on the drama of college admissions. We need to stop thinking of college admissions as a point of departure and start looking at it as the culmination of a long journey.

 

In this excerpt from her recent book, The Tyranny of the Meritocracy, Lani Guinier describes the tight linkage between standardized testing and family income. To the extent, then, that colleges rely on the SAT (or ACT) as a filter for college admission, they disproportionately screen out students who have not had the multiple advantages of living in affluence.

 

She cites data demonstrating that the SAT is of little value in predicting college performance, yet it effectively excludes students of color and students who are from low-income families.

 

She writes:

 

Close to eight hundred colleges have decreased or eliminated reliance on high-stakes tests as the way to rank and sort students. In the current environment, however, moving away from merit by the numbers takes guts. The testing and ranking diehards, intent on maintaining their gate-keeping role, hold back and even penalize administrators who take such measures. The presidents of both Reed College and Sarah Lawrence College report experiencing forms of retribution for refusing to cooperate with the “ranking roulette.”

 

At the center of this conflict is the wildly popular US News & World Report’s annual college-rankings issue—the bible of university prestige. In the book Crazy U, Andrew Ferguson describes meeting Bob Morse, the director of data research for US News and the lead figure behind the publication’s college rankings. Morse, a small man who works in an unassuming office, is described by Ferguson as “the most powerful man in America.” And for good reason: students and parents often rely upon the rankings—reportedly produced only by Morse and a handful of other writers and editors—as a proxy for university quality. These rankings rely heavily on SAT scores for their calculations. Without such data available from, for example, Sarah Lawrence, which stopped using SAT scores in its admissions process in 2005, Morse calculated Sarah Lawrence’s ranking by assuming an average SAT score roughly 200 points below the average score of its peer group. How does US News justify simply making up a number? Michele Tolela Myers, the president of Sarah Lawrence at the time the school stopped using the SAT, reported that the reasoning behind the lowered ranking was explained to her this way: “[Director Morse] made it clear to me that he believes that schools that do not use SAT scores in their admission process are admitting less capable students and therefore should lose points on their selectivity index.”

 

This is the testocracy in action, an aristocracy determined by testing that wants to maintain its position even if it has to resort to fabrication. What is it they are so desperate to protect? The answer initially seems to be that the SAT can predict how well students will do in college and thus how well-prepared they are to enter a particular school. There is a relationship between a student’s SAT score and his first-year college grades. The problem is it’s a very modest relationship. It is a positive relationship, meaning it is more than zero. But it is not what most people would assume when they hear the term correlation.

 

In 2004, economist Jesse Rothstein published an independent study that found only a meager 2.7 percent of grade variance in the first year of college can be effectively predicted by the SAT. The LSAT has a similarly weak correlation to actual achievement in law school. Jane Balin, Michelle Fine, and I did a study at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where we looked at the first-year law school grades of 981 students over several years and then looked at their LSAT scores. It turned out that there was a modest relationship between their test scores and their grades. The LSAT predicted 14 percent of the variance between the first-year grades. And it did a little better the second year: 15 percent. Which means that 85 percent of the time it was wrong. I remember being at a meeting with a person who at the time worked for the Law School Admission Council, which constructs the LSAT. When I brought these numbers up to her she actually seemed surprised they were that high. “Well,” she said, “nationwide the test is nine percent better than random.” Nine percent better than random. That’s what we’re talking about….

 

Meaningful participation in a democratic society depends upon citizens who are willing to develop and utilize these three skills: collaborative problem solving, independent thinking, and creative leadership. But these skills bear no relationship to success in the testocracy. Aptitude tests do not predict leadership, emotional intelligence, or the capacity to work with others to contribute to society. All that a test like the SAT promises is a (very, very slight) correlation with first-year college grades.

 

But once you’re past the first year or two of higher education, success isn’t about being the best test taker in the room any longer. It’s about being able to work with other people who have different strengths than you and who are also prepared to back you up when you make a mistake or when you feel vulnerable. Our colleges and universities have to take pride not in compiling an individualistic group of very-high-scoring students but in nurturing a diverse group of thinkers and facilitating how they solve complex problems creatively—because complex problems seem to be all the world has in store for us these days.

We live in a time that reeks with what the late child psychiatrist Elisabeth Young-Bruehl called “Childism: Prejudice Against Young Children.” In a book with that title, she identified NCLB high stakes testing as an example of “Childism.”

Thomas Scarice, Superintendent of Schools in Madison, Connecticut, makes a plea to restore innocence to children.

Scarice writes:

“Over the past decade, schools have deteriorated into data factories, reducing children to mere numbers, with a perverted ranking and sorting of winners and losers in high stakes testing schemes. And now, a new test promising to revolutionize education will produce yet more meaningless data for adults starving to exploit children for self-gain, selfish career aspirations, blind ideological ploys, or for the purposes of establishing high property values on the backs of children, all the while sorting out which 8 year olds are on track to be “college and career ready”.

“Even at the classroom level, children suffer from the unintended consequences of well-meaning adults unaware of the ways that children naturally develop and grow. Frivolous homework policies invade private family time and rob children of necessary unstructured time to develop executive functioning.

“Play, the natural way children learn, is reduced to filler, barely acknowledged for the critical role it fulfills in child development. No one questions why the caged bird flies as soon as the cage door opens, nor should they question why children naturally play at a moment’s notice.

“Even perhaps the most fundamental function of schools, the teaching of reading, has succumbed to the ignorance of this era. New standards and tests with a myopic focus on text without regard for the reader (i.e. the child actually doing the reading), without regard for their interests, knowledge, and passions, will serve to further disengage children from the splendor of reading and give students more reasons to see school, and reading, as irrelevant.

“With unprecedented childhood poverty rates, an explosion in the identification of attention deficit disorder, recent reports of soaring teenage suicide rates, one thing is clear: the violation of childhood knows no boundaries.”

We are the adults, Scarice says. It is our responsibility to protect children, not to use them to satisfy our will or ideology.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 121,153 other followers