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“Fraud” is the right word. The right “F” word, even more than “failed” or that other one.

The results from the 2017 National Assessment of Educational Progress,  America’s “Report Card,” are staggering:

It’s not a pretty story. Only 37 percent of 12th-graders tested proficient or better in reading, and only 25 percent did so in math. Among black students, only 17 percent tested proficient or better in reading, and just 7 percent reached at least a proficient level in math.

The atrocious NAEP performance is only a fraction of the bad news. Nationally, our high school graduation rate is over 80 percent. That means high school diplomas, which attest that these students can read and compute at a 12th-grade level, are conferred when 63 percent are not proficient in reading and 75 percent are not proficient in math. For blacks, the news is worse. Roughly 75 percent of black students received high school diplomas attesting that they could read and compute at the 12th-grade level. However, 83 percent could not read at that level, and 93 percent could not do math at that level. It’s grossly dishonest for the education establishment and politicians to boast about unprecedented graduation rates when the high school diplomas, for the most part, do not represent academic achievement. At best, they certify attendance.

Summarized in a sentence: Two-thirds of American high school graduates are functionally illiterate. This should shock and dismay more than just the writing set.

The people almost seem okay with this. It’s like another great George Carlin skit:

Carlin/YouTube.

America’s national average IQ is falling decade by decade. This even as the children suffer more and more “education.” Some, like Georgia’s potential next Governor, Stacey Abrams (a great fiction writer, BTW), want universal, “free” college for everyone. What’s the point. Why go to college or even to high school if the result is a majority that can’t read or do basic math?

Various peoples of the older world had less formal education but were on average smarter than modern Americans. Such was the case in Victorian England. The verbosity and concomitant popularity of Varney the Vampire bears this out: what would be a “difficult” read by today’s low standards was immensely popular with the street urchin, drop-out boys and young men on the streets of 19th century London. Why? How?

It’s not definitively provable but it is suspected that the average IQ in Plato’s Athens was around 125 (SB or Wechsler) – 2 standard deviations above America’s average today (maybe three above tomorrow…). That was the average, with half being even higher. How many standardized tests were those kids back then subjected to? None, likely.

And as our system continues to fail and to fail more spectacularly, the only answer from the establishment is more and more of the same.

We’ll get more of the same on all fronts. More fraud. More failure. Look for it in next year’s report card.

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