Wednesday, July 4, 2007


The Steven Head case has a number of important implications. Thirteen months ago, I spoke at a hearing of the Department of Education concerning recognition of the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) as an agency that the government recognizes to accredit education schools. I noted that NCATE has been at the nexus of declining educational achievement in the United States.

In a blog today, Phil Orenstein points out that declining educational attainment is due to the "social justice" education that NCATE advocates:

"I have discussed this with immigrant co-workers and colleagues who are the product of fine technical institutions from Argentina to Israel who lament that the engineering schools and manufacturing programs of America are a joke. The dumbing down of competitive skills, workplace values and discipline in the postmodern academic world has put U.S. scientific and technical education to shame as compared with foreign countries."

The indifference to objective knowledge, factual learning and rigor is characteristic of the anti-foundationalism prevalent in the humanities and in the education schools today. NCATE has adopted failed anti-foundationalist ideology, which it enforces through its accrediting standards. In turn, NCATE's approach to education makes young Americans unemployable. Americans of future generations will starve because of NCATE, but at least they will have NCATE to eat.

Phil Orenstein's point amounts to this. When American jobs leave America, NCATE, the education system and their advocates in the education schools are in no small part to blame.

No comments: