Via Coturnix, here’s an extremely depressing resignation letter from a public school teacher. I’ve seen this kind of thing a few times now: our problem is that the public schools are being treated as little factories, where you push kindergarten kids in at one end, and a dozen years later an adult with an education pops out. A high school diploma is regarded as an entitlement rather than an earned acknowledgment of ability, and what that means is that administrators tend to lower their standards and be extremely lenient about the behavior and skills of both students and faculty. Even where there are great teachers and first-rate students, they are getting swamped in the rising tide of permitted nonsense.
After all, if all the voting public cares about is your graduation rate, it’s easy to keep that high: just hand out diplomas to kids for showing up.