A 16-year teacher wrote to say he had just completed his professional development course for the Common Core.

He got a certificate “honoring” him for having done so. It was co-signed by someone from the New York City Department of Education and someone from “Pearson/America’s Choice.”

Why a private vendor that is making a profit selling this stuff should sign the certificate is beyond my understanding.

But here’s the context: This teacher has a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in history. He taught history and social studies in a large high school that the Bloomberg administration closed down and replaced with five small schools. Most of the veteran teachers don’t have jobs anymore; instead they were placed into the Absent Teacher Reserve, which means they float from school to school for a week at each school, like permanent substitutes.

So, to add to the indignity of losing his school, losing his position, and losing his colleagues, this teacher now has the honor of a certificate congratulating him for having mastered the Common Core learning standards, co-signed by the vendor.

What kind of a world is this? Maybe that should be the title of my blog, because I ask that question almost daily, it seems.