PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – An article in the Los Angeles Times titled “Moving Beyond Blame the Teacher,” discusses current efforts to improve public education based on the flawed assumption that teachers are the problem — emphasis on standardized tests, merit pay, erosion of tenure, teacher evaluation — all of which lead to teacher accountability.

The authors point to disturbing parallels between this approach to quality in education and approaches that failed in U.S. manufacturing, arguing that it isn’t the workers but the system, citing the success of Japanese–run auto plants that reached world-class quality levels with U.S. workers.

The article views school reform by the same management myths. Instead of seeing teachers (i.e..workers) as contributors to improvement efforts, “reformers are focused on making teachers more replaceable.”

Citing places where collaboration of unions, teachers and administrations has worked to increase student performance — the ABC Unified School District south of Los Angeles and the Plattsburgh District in upstate New York — the message is that partnerships work.

Reported By Dr. Marciene Mattleman, KYW Newsradio

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