Thursday, May 08, 2008

Focus On The Good, Or The Bad?

Here we go again, it's that time of the month--receipt of California Educator magazine, the monthly birdcage liner of the California Teachers Association.

So what does this issue bring to my happy little home? Hypocrisy, of course.

On page 26 we read the story about schools that are identified as failing for so long that they develop a "culture of failure". I'll skip that obvious fish in a barrel and proceed to the story we're told:

The study describes a 1982 experiment at the University of Wisconsin where researchers videotaped two bowling teams during several games. Afterward, one team watched a video showing only when team members made mistakes; another watched a video that showed only participants performing well. Both teams improved their games after watching the video. But the team that studied its successes improved its score twice as much as the one that studied its mistakes. The conclusion that can be drawn, said Daly, is that when people study problems and conflicts, the number and severity of the problems they identify actually increase.

Daly believes that the same occurs when it comes to public education.

Oh, I agree completely with Mr. Daly on that one. CTA should heed the words of the speaker they paid.

CTA, can a Republican president do anything right? CTA, how are we doing with race relations in this country? CTA, do we have anything to be proud of as Americans? CTA, what do you think of our nation's Founders? CTA, has the country improved since the days of Jim Crow? CTA, what's going right in our country? CTA, have you ever met a race pimp you didn't like?

Far too many of CTA's members, the footsoldiers of the public education of which Mr. Daly spoke, don't treat American history--or American present, for that matter--with a "warts and all" outlook, but with a "warts only" outlook. CTA, which gives over 95% of its political donations to Democrats, fractures us with identity politics instead of highlighting what unites us as Americans. CTA, which is in bed with International A.N.S.W.E.R. CTA, a partisan, divisive organization, wants to lecture us about focusing too much on the negative.

CTA should, in this case, practice what it preaches.

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