What we have here is a failure to educate

Is the USA in 2022 a military superpower?  Yes.  Is the U.S. economy in 2022 a superpower?  Yes.  Is the USA in 2022 a superpower in terms of public education?  Not hardly, or, as Biden likes to say, "C'mon, man!"

Why isn't America a superpower in terms of public education?  Don't we pay a lot of money for public education in America?  We are right near the top in terms of what we pay per student, but, alas, we don't get much bang for our bucks.

In 2022, the corporate news and media outlets in America promote the stories they like and kill the stories that do not suit their purposes.  Their allies in the teachers' unions and the 13,452 school districts across America do not want us to know much about the performance of those schools compared with other developed nations.  Like clockwork, they happily generate report cards for American students, but they do not want the American people to see their report cards when compared with other developed nations.

Since Democrat candidate Terry McAuliffe famously said in the 2021 race for governor of Virginia, "I don't think parents should be telling schools what they should teach," there has been a rebirth of parental interest in American public education.  While most of the focus has been on parental opposition to teaching Critical Race Theory, the poor performance of American public schools relative to other developed nations begs for attention.

Image: Failing report card (edited) by amboo who?  CC BY-SA 2.0.

According to the Program for International Student Assessment, American public schools are mediocre to below average.  In reading, for example, we rank 13th internationally.  In science, we rank 18th.  In math, we rank a pitiful 38th.  I can understand why educational leaders shy from talking about this, but I do not understand the arrogance of educators and school boards when you consider how poorly they train our students.

There is a proverb: success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan.  After their recent Super Bowl win, the Los Angeles Rams can rightly claim they are a very good football team.  But what can American educators say about their failures in reading, science, and math?  We could expect humility.  We would think they'd be working overtime to close the gaps between American performance and that of other high-performing nations.

Instead, educrats, like monopolies of old, exude arrogance and disdain when customers question their practices.  We are the experts, and the public has no right to question our ways and means of educating seems to be their mantra.

From 2006 to 2016, I wore three hats in the world of education.  I was a public high school teacher, the parent of two public school students, and a taxpayer supporting public education.  I retired in 2016, but I still have a son in public school.  I know it sounds old-fashioned, but I believe we have a right to expect excellence for the taxes we pay to support public education.

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