Tom Ultican writes a warning about a program called the National Math and Science Initiative.

“The National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) was founded by a group of Dallas area lawyers and businessmen. Tom Luce is identified as the founder and Rex Tillerson, the CEO of ExxonMobil and present US Secretary of State, provided the financing…

“Tom Luce is a lawyer not an educator but his fingerprints are all over some of the worst education policies in the history of our country. His bio at the George W. Bush Whitehouse archives says, “… Luce is perhaps best known for his role in 1984 as the chief of staff of the Texas Select Committee of Public Education, which produced one of the first major reform efforts among public schools.” The chairman of that committee was Ross Perot.”

Luce can claim credit for Texas’ expensive and wasteful obsession with testing and data. Hundreds of millions of dollars—maybe billions—were squandered by Texas in pursuit of data and scores. Thanks, Tom Luce.

Ultican writes:

“Mark Twain said, “To a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” For Ross Perot, the founder of Electronic Data Systems the problems in education looked like data problems. He and his Chief of Staff, Tom Luce, decided standardized testing and data analysis were the prescription for failing public schools. Unfortunately, standardized testing is totally useless for analyzing learning and public schools were not actually failing.

“Tom Luce was also directly involved in implementing NCLB (a spectacular education reform failure) while serving at the US Department of Education.”

So Luce helped deploy billions of dollars more in data gathering.

Now the NSMI is promoting Luce’s philosophy of teach to the test and bribes.

The fact that these policies have failed dramatically for 15 years at the national level and for 30 years in Texas does not slow the momentum of their advocates.