What We’re Watching: The Parent Trigger Backlash

By Education Next 10/01/2012

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In this video, the Wall Street Journal’s David Feith discusses the backlash against the movie “Won’t Back Down.”

Andrew Kelly reviewed the movie for Ed Next here.

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  • Karl Wheatley says:

    Unfortunately, politicians rarely have a deep understanding of education, so most high-profile politicians have misdiagnosed how our schools are doing, what the real challenges are, and how to improve education.

    The endless, careless and unscientific use of the phrase “failing schools” reveals deep ignorance of the difference between raw student data and evaluation of educational effectiveness.

    In this climate, politicians left, right, and center have been fooled about the likely effects of all sorts of policies, from high-stakes testing to carrot and stick motivation to parent trigger.

    Among the likely effects of parent trigger is tearing apart a community, which has happened in the community that inspired the film. There is no evidence anywhere that parent trigger, on average, will improve schools. Thus, isn’t it rather reckless to promote its widespread adoption?

  • Jeff says:


    You want to dismiss a proposal before it even has a chance to be tried. We do know that test scores have remained flat for decades despite more than tripling spending per pupil over that same period.

    It’s time we bring more options to the table instead of sticking with what we know has been delivering mediocre results.

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