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'Value-added' teacher evaluations: L.A. Unified tackles a tough formula (making states' rounds)
Los Angeles Times ^ | March 28, 2011 | Teresa Watanabe

Posted on 03/28/2011 2:30:24 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife

In Houston, school district officials introduced a test score-based evaluation system to determine teacher bonuses, then — in the face of massive protests — jettisoned the formula after one year to devise a better one.

In New York, teachers union officials are fighting the public release of ratings for more than 12,000 teachers, arguing that the estimates can be drastically wrong.

Despite such controversies, Los Angeles school district leaders are poised to plunge ahead with their own confidential "value-added" ratings this spring, saying the approach is far more objective and accurate than any other evaluation tool available.

...All value-added methods aim to estimate a teacher's effectiveness in raising students' standardized test scores. But there is no universal agreement on which formula can most accurately isolate a teacher's influence from other factors that affect student learning — and different formulas produce different results.

...In essence, value-added analysis involves looking at each student's past test scores to predict future scores. The difference between the prediction and students' actual scores each year is the estimated "value" that the teacher added — or subtracted.

....William Sanders, value-added consultant for the Houston Independent School District, strongly opposes adjusting for race or socioeconomic status, however. He says that it is unnecessary and that adjustments would camouflage such institutional problems as the inequitable distribution of teaching talent. "I want administrators to deal with this and not sweep it under the rug," he said.

Deasy said that after long internal debate, L.A. Unified decided to control for race, ethnicity, mobility, English proficiency and special education status. He noted that they can affect achievement but "don't determine or predict it."

...Many teachers and union leaders say they are not necessarily opposed to value-added methods but want to understand them and have a say in how they're used....

(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News
KEYWORDS: education; teachersunions
It is not about improved education. It's all about union jobs.

It's about "Exemplary" blazed over the front door of your school vs
"Recognized"
"Academically Acceptable"
"Academically Unacceptable" or
"Not Rated:Other"

FIGURES DON'T LIE BUT LIARS CAN FIGURE.

Printing "My Child is an Honor Student" bumper stickers is as effective in hiding declining education standards, as printing money is in hiding a failing economy.

1 posted on 03/28/2011 2:30:27 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

I have a nephew who did very poorly in school, both parochial and public, but who did very well when home schooled.

Frankly, any teacher evaluated by his scholastic test scores would have looked awful, and it wouldn’t have been their faults.

My nephew was a stinker as a student!

So in this case I have to side with the teachers.


2 posted on 03/28/2011 2:50:07 AM PDT by SatinDoll (NO FOREIGN NATIONALS AS OUR PRESIDENT!)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

“FIGURES DON’T LIE BUT LIARS CAN FIGURE.”

From the state of Texas the standards for a school being rated as academically acceptable are:

Meets each standard:
• Reading/ELA .... 70%
• Writing............... 70%
• Social Studies... 70%
• Mathematics ..... 60%
• Science ............. 55%

55% of the students taking the science test needed to pass the test. A score of 51% was PASSING for an eleventh grader in 2010!

60% of the students needed to pass the math test. A score of 52% was PASSING for an eleventh grader in 2010!

These are multiple choice tests with only 4 possible answer choices. Students have a 25% chance of answering a problem correctly if they merely guess.

School and teacher ratings do not indicate that anybody is doing particularly well. They indicate that “most” students are making minimal standards.


3 posted on 03/28/2011 3:02:57 AM PDT by paint_your_wagon
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To: SatinDoll

“So in this case I have to side with the teachers.”

You have a very good point. But instead of siding with the teachers, I think your personal observation is more of a condemnation of our one size fits none school system.


4 posted on 03/28/2011 3:09:10 AM PDT by paint_your_wagon
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To: paint_your_wagon

Ping


5 posted on 03/28/2011 3:10:07 AM PDT by wintertime
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To: SatinDoll

The better observation may have been the best teacher was not at the school, or was discipline more at play here than his ability to be a student?


6 posted on 03/28/2011 3:10:22 AM PDT by mazda77 (Mike Hogan - JAX Mayor)
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To: SatinDoll
I have a nephew who did very poorly in school, both parochial and public, but who did very well when home schooled....

Tutoring is a fast growing business. It's amazing how well kids learn when they're taught.

7 posted on 03/28/2011 3:17:16 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: paint_your_wagon

}I think your personal observation is more of a condemnation of our one size fits none school system.”

Yes, I agree with partly with your observation.

I did very well in both parochial and public schools.

My nephew, on the other hand, was born a methadone baby. He was and still is very emotionally high strung.


8 posted on 03/28/2011 3:21:24 AM PDT by SatinDoll (NO FOREIGN NATIONALS AS OUR PRESIDENT!)
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To: mazda77

“...may have been the best teacher was not at the school...”

Usually parents are not able to decide who the teachers are for their children. Sometime, if they push the issue, they can have their child removed from a bad teacher.

Parents also have almost no control over the composition other students in the class. Is their a gang member, drug dealer, or whatever in the room? Maybe your child is getting educated in more than just academics.


9 posted on 03/28/2011 3:22:13 AM PDT by paint_your_wagon
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

If every single evaluation of teachers should be kept secret because they ‘could be wrong,’ why do we even test students, when the teachers evaluating ‘could be wrong’?

The hypocrisy of teachers slays me—they want everything, don’t want any responsiblity for doing a good job.

I wonder how these teachers would feel if they brought their car to a mechanic who refused to tell them if he or his employees had the skills to repair their car.

I wonder how these teachers would feel if they bought food at a store that refused to label perishables with expiration dates, since they can be wrong.

I don’t let parents off the hook for not teaching their kids good study habits and manners and allowing them to watch endless TV instead of reading a book (many of the parents I have to deal with in my work are complaining about how smart their kids are while they obviously have never read a book since they dropped out of high school). But this is the nation they’ve helped bring us—the “it’s always someone else’s fault, and don’t you DARE criticize me, I’m a PUBLIC SERVANT and you should be grateful, I could be making millions in the private sector” spirit has crushed the can-do spirit as our unofficial American creed.

Thank God I’m old and won’t see too much of the decline and fall.


10 posted on 03/28/2011 3:22:33 AM PDT by Darkwolf377 (We don't need no stinkin' consistency!)
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To: mazda77

I suspect our students aren’t as well-behaved as they should be, and that is a major cause of poor performance as reflected in test scores.


11 posted on 03/28/2011 3:23:52 AM PDT by SatinDoll (NO FOREIGN NATIONALS AS OUR PRESIDENT!)
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To: paint_your_wagon
Yes! Those "wonderful" multiple choice tests.

And when you start "formulating" scoring, it never ends.

So, it's no wonder that in Dayton, OH the feds have begun demanding ["The D.O.J. approved new scoring policy only requires potential police officers to get a 58% and a 63%. That's the equivalent of an 'F' and a 'D'."] because not enough minorities passed the entrance exam.

12 posted on 03/28/2011 3:25:10 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Darkwolf377

Bad teaching, coupled with institutionalized poverty, makes for poor learning and generational decline - the Democratic Party formula to grow dependable voters and employ union contributors.


13 posted on 03/28/2011 3:31:31 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

“And when you start “formulating” scoring, it never ends”

In Texas the passing standards are not told to the parents or the public. That information is on the TEA website, but you have to search to find it.

Instead, parents are given a “Scale Score”. 2100 is a passing score. They are never told that 2100 is just over 50% in some cases.

When a student fails the test, the score might be something like 2077. Then the teachers and administrators will tell the parents something like, “look, Johnny almost made a 2100. With a little more work we’ll get him to pass.”


14 posted on 03/28/2011 3:36:12 AM PDT by paint_your_wagon
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

The most interesting and under reported feature of the Dayton DOJ story is the local NAACP is also against what the DOJ is doing.

There are rays of light breaking through the darkness.


15 posted on 03/28/2011 3:53:30 AM PDT by mazda77 (Mike Hogan - JAX Mayor)
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To: paint_your_wagon

then your points just amplify the root of the problem, discipline. The solution is far more difficult considering the current state of tort which is known and used like a sledge hammer by those “problems”.

We also have to back up the good teacher’s ability to control their classrooms with real and meaningful “loser pays” system of tort laws. Then, many, many other issues we face today will mysteriously evaporate as well.


16 posted on 03/28/2011 3:59:01 AM PDT by mazda77 (Mike Hogan - JAX Mayor)
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To: mazda77

“The solution is far more difficult...”

Oh, I don’t know.

I think that the discipline problems that many schools have is more of a symptom.

The first step will be for the educational beauracracy to admit that it has a problem and is powerless to fix itself. In that regard I’d say the solution is not difficult but rather impossible.

If a school comes down too hard on disruptive students and ultimately shows them the door, then (a) the district loses money because their income depends on attendance; and (b) their dropout rate increases, which reduces their academic performance rating...which can reduce money to the district.

School is not about education. It is a numbers game used to increase federal and state dollars into the district.


17 posted on 03/28/2011 4:34:02 AM PDT by paint_your_wagon
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To: mazda77
The most interesting and under reported feature of the Dayton DOJ story is the local NAACP is also against what the DOJ is doing.

I read that and was VERY encourage.

18 posted on 03/28/2011 4:37:11 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: paint_your_wagon
....I think that the discipline problems that many schools have is more of a symptom....

"Administrators have said to me privately that they would rather be academically failing than be a dangerous school."

19 posted on 03/28/2011 4:45:14 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
Tutoring is a fast growing business. It's amazing how well kids learn when they're taught.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

I have a few questions about the “scores” seen on standardized tests:

1) Do government schools actually teach anything at all?

2) How much is a result of what is acquired **outside** of the school?

3) How much of what the child scores on the test is due to the institutional teacher?

I have **never** seen a news report about government school testing scores that separates out what is learned in the classroom from what is learned at home or in tutoring.

( Yes, I know I am using the word “never”.)

Honestly...If we don't separate out what is learned in the home from **afterschooling** from that which is acquired in the classroom we can't know if the government even teaches anything! We may be spending thousands of dollars per year per child on a totally ineffective prison-like schools!

Personally, I have **never** met an academically successful child who wasn't either **afterschooled** or homeschooled. Both sets of parents ( homeschooled or afterschooled) share the same values about education. Both groups have similar home habits and routines...and...Both sets of children are spending the **SAME** amount of time at the kitchen table or the child's desk.

(Again...Yes, I know I am using the word “never”.)

So?...If the time spent studying in the home is same for both homeschoolers and afterschoolers, are the government schools responsible for any of the success? How can we conclude that they are? Where are the studies that show government schools actually teach anything?

20 posted on 03/28/2011 4:51:02 AM PDT by wintertime
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

It’s amazing how requiring an investment improves outcomes.

This is true not only in education but everywhere. See housing...

“what we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly...”

Free stuff is not valued by most human beings.

The conundrum is Thomas Jefferson [among others] argued for free education. Thomas Paine seems to have differed [his quote above.]

IMHO we can do both - provide education at taxpayer expense AND have it valued. If schools could just kick people out and/or refuse admission to undesirables it could work. But... who chooses the undesirables and makes admission decisions...

condundrum indeed


21 posted on 03/28/2011 5:15:31 AM PDT by Principled (Get the capital back! NRST!)
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To: paint_your_wagon
It's screwed up royally. I guess I wasn't shocked when the Clear Creek School District opted to use the "Value Added" in their last evaluation. What's next to artificially prop up this failed system?

It really is Big Education when...

...50% of all states' budgets go to education (this isn't counting the "keep-Fed-nanny-state-in states'-business" dollars), the trickle down economy is huge. "Follow the money" applies when you have school construction contractors paying for yard signs promoting voting referendums on tax increases for school districts (one example of many)....

...when you need exit exams to "prove" the graduating class is competent on some level, it's telling.

...when universities, colleges and junior colleges give entrance exams so they know how many haven't mastered, reading, writing and math and need remedial work, it's alarming.

...when Schools of Education have more semester hours devoted to process than to subject content, it's a foregone conclusion of what their agenda is.

...when you can't boot a bad teacher because they're a protected political class, you should clearly understand that your child's potential is being lost under public education.

....when after five years, an alarming number of teachers flee the profession, you can't be surprised.

..when The National Education Association and other teacher's unions are the number one supplier of campaign donations, get out the vote muscle and an eager pool for political convention delegates the Democratic Party, you have no one to blame but yourself when your kid thinks your ideas and your country are screwed up.

Google "lesson plans" and find out how teachers source what to put in your kids' brains.

Google "arrested" and your school district/state, and see the names of teachers, school board members and other personnel pop up. Search (if you can) how criminals are helped by teacher union lawyers to move from district to district, or state to state, to remain employed by public schools.

Learn about the gold-plated package deals administrators get (adms who move from state to state through an endless revolving door of paid out contracts) and how many aides are needed and how many years it takes for students to become proficient in English....

And on and on and on....

22 posted on 03/28/2011 5:30:57 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Principled

Indeed.

Anytime you hand your money to a bureaucracy to administer your interests, you fund failure.


23 posted on 03/28/2011 5:40:14 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: wintertime
Good questions.

...We may be spending thousands of dollars per year per child on a totally ineffective prison-like schools!...

Most public schools are warehouses where our youth learn anti-social behavior and victimization "outs" to use in the future when they fail due to being uneducated.

Parents see abundant homework each night because students aren't taught enough to master the basis during school hours.

24 posted on 03/28/2011 5:47:06 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Principled
The conundrum is Thomas Jefferson [among others] argued for free education. Thomas Paine seems to have differed [his quote above.]
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

1) I don't recall Jefferson using the word “free” with regard to education. Perhaps you have links. But...If he did he was wrong and Paine was right.

2) When our Founding Fathers stressed education and having an educated citizenry, they likely had their **own** educations in mind. That would include:

homeschooling
private tutoring as needed
dame schools in the homes of neighbors
one room schools organized by parents
Sunday schools
apprenticeships
home-based academies that prepared the brightest for admission into college as **young** teens.

Likely our Founding Fathers would be **appalled** that we warehouse our nation's youth in prison-like settings that are socialist funded, establish the godless religion of Secular Humanism, and are collectivist managed by voting mob controlled school boards.

25 posted on 03/28/2011 5:49:22 AM PDT by wintertime
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To: paint_your_wagon
Parents also have almost no control over the composition other students in the class. Is their a gang member, drug dealer, or whatever in the room?
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

It is amazing to me how few conservatives understand how government schools trash the First Amendment.

In the example you give above we see how government schools trash the child and parent's right to free assembly and free association.

Unless a parent can afford to ransom a child from the government schools by paying extra to home or privately school, the government **compels** attendance at its prison-like facilities. Once there it is the government who determines with whom the child will or will not assemble and associate.

By the way,... some counties like mine have no private schools. Since the government is running a price-fixed cartel that is giving its education service away for free, the business environment is hostile to the creation of private schools. So...in my county, the only option to escape the government's heavy hand in assigning with whom a child will assemble and associate is to homeschool.

26 posted on 03/28/2011 6:11:17 AM PDT by wintertime
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
"I want administrators to deal with this and not sweep it under the rug," he said.

Rots of ruck with that! A problem is that administrators, teachers, and parents are at cross purposes although they claim to have the same goal, the interest of the students. Only the parents have that interest.

That is not fair to some but it is accurate overall.

27 posted on 03/28/2011 6:42:57 AM PDT by Mind-numbed Robot (Not all that needs to be done needs to be done by the government!)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
So, it's no wonder that in Dayton, OH the feds have begun demanding ["The D.O.J. approved new scoring policy only requires potential police officers to get a 58% and a 63%. That's the equivalent of an 'F' and a 'D'."] because not enough minorities passed the entrance exam.

Can't wait until the FAA applies that standard to airline pilots.

I have seen a number of threads about the Memphis ISD wanting to merge with the Shelby County ISD. I haven't read any of them so I don't know what is going on but my suspicion is that the Memphis inner city schools want to be merged with the suburban schools in order to raise the average for the Memphis schools. Of course, that would lower the average for the Shelby County schools but isn't that what "fairness" is all about?

28 posted on 03/28/2011 6:53:42 AM PDT by Mind-numbed Robot (Not all that needs to be done needs to be done by the government!)
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To: wintertime

links are easy to find. You may do that if you like.

his idea was not what we have today entirely of course. eg he thought attendance s/b voluntary.

but you are free to use google on your own - if the information is too easy it will not be valued ;)


29 posted on 03/28/2011 8:51:43 AM PDT by Principled (Get the capital back! NRST!)
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To: Principled
Try doing a Google on the words: Thomas Jefferson free education quotes.

I did not find any link that even remotely suggested that Thomas Jefferson felt education should be tuition-free.

But..You seem to think they would be easy to find. Perhaps you could suggest a different grouping of search words.

30 posted on 03/28/2011 12:02:18 PM PDT by wintertime
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To: wintertime

sure i can.

maybe try another search? I do find them easy to find - but I wanted to find them.


31 posted on 03/28/2011 6:20:09 PM PDT by Principled (Get the capital back! NRST!)
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To: wintertime

From the first result returned from a search:

http://jschell.myweb.uga.edu/history/legis/jeffersonuniversal.htm

Jefferson, T. (1776). The Declaration of Independence. In M. P. Nichols & D. K. Nichols (Eds.), Readings in American Government (pp. 7-9). Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt.

Jefferson, T. (1776). The Natural Aristocracy. In M. P. Nichols & D. K. Nichols (Eds.), Readings in American Government (pp. 548-551). Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt

Jewett, T. O. (1997). Thomas Jefferson and the purposes of education. The Educational Forum, 61, 110-113. Retrieved October 10, 2001 from WilsonWeb Database.

Peterson, M. D. (1994). Thomas Jefferson: the architect of democracy. Social Education, 58, 359-362.


32 posted on 03/28/2011 7:26:47 PM PDT by Principled (Get the capital back! NRST!)
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To: Principled

How about looking for a needle in a hay stack? I am not about to do that.


33 posted on 03/28/2011 8:42:26 PM PDT by wintertime
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To: Principled
I noticed that you did NOT include any direct quotes from **Jefferson** advocating tuition-free education. What you posted was academic commentary from scholars ( who may not be entirely objective since they may earn a living from the education-industrial-complex).

I am not saying that Jefferson didn't make direct statements about “free” education but these quotes couldn't be common. A Google search on the words “ Thomas Jefferson, education, and free” did not turn up any quotes about tuition-free schooling that I could find.

Anyway...As I stated in my first post, if Jefferson did say these things, he was wrong. Paine was right.

34 posted on 03/28/2011 8:51:52 PM PDT by wintertime
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To: wintertime

ok

I had a feeling it wouldn’t matter what was posted. I was not surprised.
I think I’ll take a number of published opinions over wintertime’s.

lol


35 posted on 03/29/2011 7:00:53 AM PDT by Principled (Get the capital back! NRST!)
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To: Principled

Every government degenerates when trusted to the rulers of the people alone. The people themselves are its only safe depositories. And to render even them safe, their minds must be improved to a certain degree. . . . An amendment to our constitution must here come in aid of the public education. The influence over government must be shared among all people. (as cited in Padover, 1939, p. 87)


36 posted on 03/29/2011 7:26:55 AM PDT by SoftballMominVA
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To: Principled
Hey! My comment was about Jefferson's **quotes**.

I (**personally**) do not recall ever seeing a quote of Jefferson's where he states that education should be **free** or tuition-free. My Google search did not show any such quotes.

If these quotes were easy to find you would have posted them by now.

37 posted on 03/29/2011 1:05:39 PM PDT by wintertime
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To: wintertime

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/2695683/posts?page=36#21

My comment was that Jefferson argued for free education. He did - as referenced in the link and sources above. Given that he argued for free education it seems that finding quotes to that effect would be trivial.

Or are you saying that Jefferson did not argue for free education at all?


38 posted on 03/29/2011 3:04:38 PM PDT by Principled (Get the capital back! NRST!)
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To: Principled
Or are you saying that Jefferson did not argue for free education at all?
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

This is a strawman in the form of a question.

I have been PLAIN in stating that I have never seen a quote of Jefferson where he stated that education should be “free” or tuition-free”.

I also stated that I was not able to find any quotes ( using Google) of Jefferson's regarding education being “free” or tuition-free.

If these quotes were easy to find ( you stated that they were) then you would have posted them by now.

39 posted on 03/29/2011 3:13:32 PM PDT by wintertime
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To: Principled
The conundrum is Thomas Jefferson [among others] argued for free education.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

I would think that if Jefferson argued for “free” education then I would expect that there would be one or two quotations of his stating exactly that.

Personally, using Google, I was not able to find any statements ( quotes) of Jefferson stating this. They might exist. I haven't found them. You haven't either or they would have been posted by now.

Regardless.....Jefferson and the rest would be horrified to see our modern, socialist, collectivist managed, GODLESS, prison-like, and compulsory government schools.

40 posted on 03/29/2011 3:18:44 PM PDT by wintertime
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To: wintertime

LOL! Are you saying, seriously, that although you stipulate that Jefferson argued for free education that he really didn’t argue for free education because [drum roll] an anonymous poster on FR won’t show you links to direct qotes? Well there you go.

I’m laughing and rolling my eyes. I have only asserted that Jefferson argued for free education. No strawman there. A strawman could be employed if I had asserted something different than I had originally - but nope I’m still saying the same thing - that Jefferson argued for free education.

Get your kid to search for you if you want quotes. I’m not your kid.


41 posted on 03/29/2011 3:28:55 PM PDT by Principled (Get the capital back! NRST!)
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To: SoftballMominVA
Thank god I don't worship Jefferson, because he is wrong, as history has proven.

Public education has destroyed this country, quite probably beyond repair.

42 posted on 03/29/2011 3:38:13 PM PDT by Trailerpark Badass (I'm sick of damn idiots)
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To: Trailerpark Badass

I don’t worship Jefferson either. But I do respect his courage as a founding father of America.


43 posted on 03/29/2011 6:59:58 PM PDT by SoftballMominVA
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