Thursday, September 08, 2005

Don't ride the one trick pony! part deux

Spotty says read part one for a description of Katie's latest column, Private schools do more for variety of kids. This is, of course, another installment in a series dedicated to the denigration of public schools, or gummint schools as Katie calls them.

Katie tells us of two "crack babies" (her words, not Spotty's) who were better off in a Catholic school, in spite of not being the "cream." The cream is what private schools are alleged to skim off, in Katie's telling of it, leaving the rest to the public schools. These two non-cream crack babies are proof of the superiority of private sectarian education. A titanic conclusion from a rather small sample size. Katie doesn't tell us that the boys are doing better than they did in public school.

Spot hates to quarrel with you Katie (who is he kidding? He loves to quarrel with Katie), but these two boys don't seem especially difficult to educate: they speak English, aren't special education students (they wouldn't be in a private school if they were), and very importantly, they have a parent (please note, Katie, that the boys are in a single-parent adoptive home) who is interested in, and has the time to be involved in, their education.

Katie tells us of the difference in cost between the public schools and the private school that the crack babies attend. Inner city schools have a lot tougher kids than these two, that's for sure. And Spot wonders if part of the cost differential is the fact that at least some of the faculty at the Catholic school have take a vow of poverty?

Katie says the difference is discipline and "moral vision." If she means by the latter fundie Christianity, she is right. If she means ethical judgment and human (gasp!) values, she is wrong. It is a libel of public schools to say they are unconcerned with morality. Perhaps it is Katie's pinched-faced moralism that is lacking. The shrieking shrewry of Katie and Pierson Yecke and Bachmann have claimed the high ground long enough. Their morality says pray that the hurricane will turn away, and pray for its victims, but make sure that the government is too crippled to help, and surely don't fix the levee.

Katie talks so much about discipline that Spot wonders if she has a business involving leather on the side.


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