: Supporters of the MCAS tests better start punching back. Opponents are now all but saying MCAS is A.) racist and B.) worth scuttling (which is what they’ve been saying all along). Joe Kennedy’s ploy
is bit more clever: He doesn’t quite come out and say, ‘Hey, let’s get rid of MCAS.’ But his proposal -- to eliminate the MCAS graduation requirement -- would effectively gut the program. Meanwhile, George Bachrach
is pretending again he’s one of the people. Hub Blog's long-term prediction: MCAS won't survive in its current form. But not for the reasons cited by the usual suspects. Instead, it will be suburban opposition that kills/dilutes MCAS. Do you really think the good people of Wellesley, Wayland and Weston like all the publicity about how their children fare so much better than others? It's unwanted social attention, to say the least, particularly if the education dispartity leads to calls for some form of income/education redistribution.
Reader No. 1 responds
"I think you might have whacked George Bachrach a little harder on his disgraceful op-ed. You were clever to see through Joe K's argument. On the other hand, you're way wrong about suburban opposition to MCAS. Here's why:
" -- School performance is a critical factor in determining real estate value.
" -- In this respect, the MCAS has provided a common yardstick for measurement of real estate value.
" -- Further, the majority of suburban parents see skill development as critical to their childrens' economic future. To the extent MCAS framework facilitates skill development (in addition to measuring it), they're all in favor.
"I'm a suburban parent; I know what I'm talking about. The suburban danger signs for MCAS won't be Bachrach-like arguments about how little difference it makes, or the conventional argument that it fails to take into account the richness of the educational experience. The suburban danger signs will be:
"A.) Kids stressed-out by lengthening hours of homework, drills, etc. on top of their other adult-run activities designed to provide richness in their lives (eg music, sports, etc). This is subjective, hard to measure, and unlikely to tip the balance. Think of it as an environmental consideration.
"B.) Other communities catching up on test performance, and therefore in real estate value. Watch for those in the elite communities to start looking for new yardsticks."