"No Thug Left Behind"

This sounds like a whole truckload of stupid.

Equity advocates’ central premise is that teachers, not students, are to blame for the racial-equity discipline gap. They claim that teachers’ biases, cultural ignorance, or insensitivity are the gap’s primary causes. The key to eliminating disparities, they maintain, is to change not students’ but adults’ behavior.


"Liberals are wrong to gang up on Betsy DeVos"

By a self-proclaimed Liberal:

School choice is not a fantasy of right-wing ideologues. For parents of means, it is a reality. They are able to either pay for private schools or move to districts with high-quality public schools. What school choice advocates like DeVos want is simply for poor children to have the same opportunities afforded to those parents who are better off. Opportunities that, by the way, many liberal parents happily exercise for themselves.

Link via Instapundit.


"New undergrads are starting to not know how to use computers"

Technology just keeps changing. I was going to write "advancing" but changed my mind.

"It would never happen a few years ago, but lately I've been noticing a trend of computer illiterate undergrads in my computing class. Guess a highschool kid these days doesn't have need for a computer at all?"

And see "Smartphones Have an Unexpected New Rival".


"North Carolina AD lays out academic fraud defense: NCAA 'overcharged' Tar Heels"

Both Wolfpack and Duke fans had a lot of fun with this statement by Lawrence "Bubba" Cunningham: "Is this academic fraud? Yes, it is by a normal person's standards. But by the NCAA definition [it is not]."

(Translation: Sure, we're guilty as charged and guilty as hell, but you can't punish us! Nyah, nyah!)

Among the things the Wolfpack fans linked to was "Spirit, not the letter of the law".

And, related, do see this: "Fake Classes".

 


"He Tried to Warn Us"

Hayek had  politicans' number:

Rise of the Unscrupulous and the Uninhibited

“Why the Worst Get on Top” is the title of Chapter 10 of The Road to Serfdom (1944), and it lays out the problem. In describing the dilemma of the collectivist who cannot implement his plans without inflating his authority, Hayek’s concern is not with planning so much as with power. He cautions that the supposedly gentle and compassionate morality that induces collectivism does not correspond to the morality of those who run it:

Just as the democratic statesman who sets out to plan economic life will soon be confronted with the alternative of either assuming dictatorial powers or abandoning his plans, so the totalitarian dictator would soon have to choose between disregard of ordinary morals and failure. It is for this reason that the unscrupulous and uninhibited are likely to be more successful in a society tending toward totalitarianism.


"NC has a budget surplus. Should it fund tax cuts or ‘better schools and a stronger middle class’?"

This could be a result of many factors, but Republican political control of the state probably helped.

“Even as the majority of other states face revenue shortfalls and budget crunches, Republican state leaders’ tax cuts and disciplined spending have generated a $552 million revenue surplus for North Carolina – making us one of just four states in the country expecting surpluses,” Berger said in a news release.


"Education statistics: Figures lie and politicians figure"

Local control of education is best. Almost any aggregate statistic collected by bureaucrats can be gamed:

A researcher at University of California, Santa Barbara, though noted that “One of the criticisms I have of the graduation rate as an accountability measure, is it encourages schools and districts to discharge high-risk kids” obviously raising their graduation rates.

Where do the dumped kids go? Where do they show up in the statistics?  The answers vary. In Chicago, one of the biggest school districts in the country, investigations have found that the district is misclassifying students who enroll the above kids in these “dropout dumps” as some call it as “out-of-district transfers.” Briefly: the kids disappear from any statistics. If the transferred kid though manages to graduate — the school gets credit.

Texas reports the nation’s second-highest graduation rate and the highest in the nation for African-Americans and Hispanics. But some investigations suggest that the figures there too exclude tens of thousands of students from the dropout count, simply because schools report, with little required documentation, that students have left the country or are being home-schooled.


"No escaping Downs' Law"

They just never learn:

Some years ago, Anthony Downs elaborated and popularized the idea with his "Law of Peak Hour Congestion."  Here is a nice summary. Without pricing, extra road capacity will simply attract traffic from other sources (other modes, other routes, other times of day, new trips, etc.). Congestion will not be "solved." The idea is simple -- and the lesson has been ignored a thousand times. Officials are loathe to price but love building things. This is "bi-partisan". Crony capitalism is non-denominational.