Equity or Excellence/ New York Post’s Vocabulary Challenge

May 7, 2021 by

Equity or Excellence.  Pick one, because according to the New York Post, when it comes to education, you can’t have both.   They see an adversarial relationship.  A  mutual exclusivity.  One of their editorials last week was titled “Equity vs. Excellence

“Versus” is a giveaway.

The Post’s energy for distorting education news is inexhaustible. Their spinning is perpetual motion.  Physical matter never dies, it just changes form.  Same thing is true of the Post’s half-truths and total lies.

One recent edition belongs in a museum for jaundiced journalism.  At least 5 anti-public school pieces.  I stopped counting because I had to retch.  Turns out it was a reaction to the second Moderna.

The first scrap was about a “survey” that purportedly found that three-quarters of Democrats “demand” more charter schools.  Even if, arguably, they favored what was likely couched as “more educational options”, or something along those lines, the Post ratcheted up the level of support to make it sound passionate.  That would be an interpretation, not a conclusion. 

The survey is passed off as authoritative and definitive. But who commissioned and conducted it?  It was paid-for by an organization that is vehemently, single-mindedly and intractably anti-public school and teachers union.

Why didn’t the phrasing of the survey questions appear anywhere in the story?   How were the participants selected?  Who were they and how many?  Was the survey scientifically constructed?  The answers might shed light or cast a shadow on the survey’s legitimacy, which I expect is why they were conscientiously omitted.

Another piece was slightly less warped but still sufficiently so to go comprehensively awry. It was about the Department of Education’s glitch-ridden parent portal and their botched communications about offers of admission to middle schools. As long as a story is unflattering, they’ll go with it.  Too often the DOE makes it easy for them.

And then Seth Barron’s windy column in which he gas-bags that there is “a gaping lack of quality middle schools”, which he attributes to the school system being “dominated by unionized teachers”.  Adding idiocy to insult and injury, Barron says “the cabal in charge of education policy doesn’t even like the principle of excellence” and that “destroying the city’s best schools…is basically the goal”.  Barron views the teachers union as the leader of the supreme cabal ministry.

And then, on the same page, are two caustic, kissing cousins editorials.  One of them drools venom locally; the other dribbles its poison on a different school system in Virginia, because it too avows and uncompromising devotion to equity.  The first editorial asserts that the DOE just wants to “make it harder for parents to realize how badly the city schools fail their kids”,and the second one calls equity “garbage” that empowers China.

The New York Post is okay for sports and embellished police blotter-type tales, but it is a fountainhead of ill-will as a source of education news, and a drunken propagandist for the lustful enemies of truth about our public schools and its professionals.

Ron Isaac

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