Factor the dropouts back in, and what the NAEP test suggests is that, of black kids starting in first grade, about one in eight will be able to read at the level of a high school senior after 12 years, and one in 33 will be able to do the math. Among Hispanic kids, one in 10 will be able to read at a high-school senior level, but only one in 20 will be able to do high-school math.
Yet, as columnist Steve Sailor writes on VDare.com, the Bush-Kennedy No Child Left Behind Act mandates "that all children should reach a proficient level of academic achievement by 2014."
We're not going to make it. We're not even going to come close.
Why are so many Americans ignorant of the depths of failure of so many schools? As Sailor explains, it is due to government deceit.
"Not surprisingly, practically ever single state cheats in order to meet the law" mandating a rising academic proficiency.
"For example, Mississippi ... recently declared that 89 percent of its fourth-graders were at least 'proficient' in reading.
"Unfortunately, however, on the federal government's impartial National Assessment of Education Progress test, only 18 percent of Mississippi students were 'proficient' or 'advanced.'"
Hence, a huge slice of the U.S. educational establishment is complicit in a monstrous fraud that, if you did it in business, would get you several years at the nearby minimum security facility.
This is corruption. Teachers are handing out grades kids do not deserve. States are dumbing-down tests to make themselves look good. Voters are being deceived about how much kids are learning.
There is no real moral distinction between what teachers and educators are doing on a vast scale and what professional athletes do on a smaller scale when they take steroids to enhance performance.
As The Washington Times noted, according to the Digest of Education Statistics, spending for public education, in constant (inflation-adjusted) dollars, rose from $6,256 a year per student before "A Nation at Risk" to $10,464 in the 2002-2003 school year. Taxpayers have thus raised their annual contribution to education by a full two-thirds in real dollars in a quarter century. More than generous.
Under George W. Bush, U.S. Department of Education funding has risen 92 percent in six years, from $35.5 billion in 2001 to $68 billion in 2007. Sinking test scores are what we have to show for it.
Taxpayers are being lied to and swindled by the education industry, which has failed them, failed America and flunked its assignment -- and should be expelled for cheating.