Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Dec. 8, 2010 The Decision of The Moncton Times

Hats off to the Moncton Times. It has discovered a new way to avoid telling the truth without actually  lying. And it's so siimple, it amounts to pure genius.
1. Instead or taking an intelligible (even if biased) story from a news service, it assigned a staff reporter to write a story sp canfusing that few will be able to make any sense out of it.. Then they  hide it at the bottom of p. 3 under a headline that says New Burnswick's education ranking rose. But it has a sub heading that says NB scores fell. So things got better; but they got worse when they got better. Right. Clear as a bell.

2.The story didn't bother to mention that New Brunswick, with Canada as a whole, was rated, once again, among the best education systems in the world.

3. There is a difference between a ranking and a rating. Obviously, nobody at The Moncton Times and Tribune knows that, not even the editors. The UN makes it clear there is a difference. It also makes it clear that ratings do not measure the qualities of teachers or of individual schools. The Times doesn't even bother to mention that, either - though it has frequentlyy written foaming at the mouth editorials that insist that students tests DO measure teachers and schools..

4. As always, the  newspaper does not know there is a difference between a school ranking and a horse race. In a  horse race, the one that finishes, say) in 19 seconds is the winner,even  if all the other nine finish within half a second of the first horse. But if one person scores 98 n a test, and the next nine all come between 98 and 95 or even a bit less, there is no significant difference. I wish the news media world would learn that.

5. There is no mention of the American ratings. That is a stronge omission because we are in the process of imposing the American system of standardized testing and ranking on New Brunswick schools. I haven't yet seen the official report for the UN rating of American schools; but I know they are close to the bottom of the pile in something like 28th place. And 28th place is not just a few percentt behind Canada in 10th place. The gap is huge with the US far behind even countries that we think of as primitive. But The Moncton times pushing for adoption of the American system. Maybe that has something to do with AIMS,and with the ownership of The Times. Nah. Nonewspaper would be so unethical as that. Maybe.

6. There was no editorial on the subject on Dec. 8.  But maybe the editorial writer is just stocking up on foam for Dec. 9.

No comments:

Post a Comment