Diane Ravitch revient dans cet article sur les réformes éducatives en cours aux États-Unis partant d'un constat d'échec : "Because of its utopian goals, coupled with harsh sanctions, No Child Left Behind (NCLB) has turned out to be the worst federal education legislation ever passed."

Le remède est parfois pire que le mal : "Most research studies agree that charter schools are, on average, no more successful than regular public schools; that evaluating teachers on the basis of their students’ test scores is fraught with inaccuracy and promotes narrowing of the curriculum to only the subjects tested, encouraging some districts to drop the arts or other nontested subjects; and that the strategy of closing schools disrupts communities without necessarily producing better schools."

Contre une vision simpliste de l'école, Diane Ravitch oppose quelques évidences : "Economists agree that teachers are the most important influence on student test scores inside the school, but the influence of schools and teachers is dwarfed by nonschool factors, most especially by family income. The reformers like to say that poverty doesn’t make a difference, but they are wrong. Poverty matters. The achievement gap between children of affluence and children of poverty starts long before the first day of school. It reflects the nutrition and medical care available to pregnant women and their children, as well as the educational level of the children’s parents, the vocabulary they hear, and the experiences to which they are exposed."

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Source : The New York Review of Books, septembre 2011