TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - The Board of Education decided in an emergency meeting Tuesday to lower the passing grade on the writing portion of Florida's standardized test after preliminary results showed a drastic drop in student passing scores.
The results indicated only about a third of students would pass this year's tougher Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test exam, compared with a passing rate of 80 percent or more last year.
That's fraud, by the way, but it's nothing new when it comes to government schools.
"Our students must know how to read and write, and our education system must be able to measure and benchmark their progress so we can set clear education goals," said Gov. Rick Scott in a statement Monday. "The significant contrast in this year's writing scores is an obvious indication that the Department of Education needs to review the issue and recommend an action plan so that our schools, parents, teachers and students have a clear understanding of the results."
So when they don't, and when we have "education majors" that go into "teaching" who both can't speak and write in the King's English and also can't teach it (probably because they fail at it themselves) we simply change the passing grade on the test from an "F" to a "F-" and call it ok.
There's a problem with this "strategy", of course -- that's the fact that employers don't see it that way. And I can tell you this from personal experience as an employer -- in Chicago, for example, more than nine out of ten "High School Diplomas" did not signify that the holder was able to perform four-function arithmetic with a pencil and paper, nor did it signify the ability to write a common business letter.
Why do I know this? Because I had more than 20 linear file cabinet feet full of resumes and job applications from people seeking jobs at my company, all of whom were required to perform those two tasks before getting an interview.
Better than 90% failed.
Note that this test requires reading and writing skills approximately equal to that of the sixth or seventh grade, and arithmetic commensurate with basic mathematics -- not even algebra-level. There was no requirement, for example, to factor a simple polynomial (something relatively common in business, incidentally, when figuring price levels to set.)
Government schools have failed. We have thrown more and more money at the problem and have not found results. The correct solution to this problem, given the more than 30 years worth of experimentation on our children and the incessant screaming and puerile displays of rage from the public teachers unions, is to constitutionally outlaw the property tax at the State level, de-fund the public schools and allow the market to decide what is and is not a proper education and who is going to provide it.
You might have been able to argue that public schools were "worthwhile" in some form or fashion 10 or 20 years ago. Given the facts and utter failure to address worsening scores on an ongoing basis, along with what is now institutionalized test fraud to claim that schools "passed" when they did not, you simply can't make the argument now.
Where We Are, Where We're Heading (2013) - The annual 2013 Ticker
The content on this site is provided without any warranty, express or implied. All opinions expressed on this site are those of the author and may contain errors or omissions.
NO MATERIAL HERE CONSTITUTES "INVESTMENT ADVICE" NOR IS IT A RECOMMENDATION TO BUY OR SELL ANY FINANCIAL INSTRUMENT, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO STOCKS, OPTIONS, BONDS OR FUTURES.
The author may have a position in any company or security mentioned herein. Actions you undertake as a consequence of any analysis, opinion or advertisement on this site are your sole responsibility.
Looking for "The Best of Market Ticker"? Check out Ticker Classics.
Market charts, when present, used with permission of TD Ameritrade/ThinkOrSwim Inc. Neither TD Ameritrade or ThinkOrSwim have reviewed, approved or disapproved any content herein.
The Market Ticker content may be reproduced or excerpted online for non-commercial purposes provided full attribution is given and the original article source is linked to. Please contact Karl Denninger for reprint permission in other media or for commercial use.
Submissions or tips on matters of economic or political interest may be sent "over the transom" to The Editor at any time. To be considered for publication your submission must include full and correct contact information and be related to an economic or political matter of the day. All submissions become the property of The Market Ticker.