The Problem is not Common Core

The New Yorker has a great piece on Louis CK's criticisms of Common Core. But I think BoingBoing's Cory Doctorow gets to the heart of the broader issue:

"Taxpayers" are the shareholders in government. The government is the board of directors. School administrators are the management. Teachers are the assembly-line workers. Kids are the product. "Accountability" means that the product has to be quantified and reported on every quarter. The only readily quantifiable elements of education are attendance and test-scores, so the entire educational system is reorganized around maximizing these elements, even though they are only tangentially related to real educational outcomes and are trivial to game.

I cannot speak to the specifics of Common Core's math standards. I think Vox does a good job explaining what the hell is going on.

We have been down this path before. New Math, a method for teach arithmetic developed in the 1960s, raised the same sorts of critisms as Common Core.

We have confused education with learning a specific set of skills rather then learning framing works for obtaining skills. We have abandoned critical thinking for memorization. And we traded creativity for standardized tests.

Additional Reading: What Louis CK gets wrong on Common Core