Haslam Administration Royally Screws Up.
Millions of Tax Dollars Wasted in School Test Crash. Teachers Furious.
Chuck Cagle at the White Hot Center of the Disaster.
Oh good Lord – where do we begin?
Just when you thought the Haslam administration’s arrogance, incompetence and corruption of our state’s education system could not get any worse – it does.
The much ballyhooed on-line testing system crashed yesterday – big time, leaving students and teachers hanging out to dry. After millions of dollars paid to scam-artist vendors and for the purchase of computer equipment to take the new test, the whole damn thing collapsed. Now, after months of preparing students to take their tests on-line, students will have to do so with paper and pencil.
There is plenty of blame to go around, so let’s start with the most obvious:
Bill Haslam and his Dept. of Education
Ever since Haslam hired Kevin “I Voted for Obama” Huffman, Tennesseans have been subjected to one corrupt education program after another: Common Core, TNReady, Teach for America….the list goes on and on. Contributors, cronies, mega-education companies, etc. have raked in untold millions in consulting fees and contracts.
The sheer arrogance of the governor and his appointees is hard to comprehend. At every turn in this debacle, Haslam was warned by voters, teachers, legislators and a host of others about his policies. But Haslam, aided by Huffman and his acolytes, blindly plunged ahead, flipping off their critics and engaging in end-arounds and executive orders that would make Obama blush (not an easy thing to do). The result: a bunch of vendors made millions and taxpayers, teachers and students got screwed.
Now the state is faced with giving a test whose results are almost guaranteed to be discounted and thrown into the evaluation waste bin. If it is not, you can count on Haslam and his administration getting their asses sued off in court.
This is not the first time the DOE has screwed up their own test. Remember Erin O’Hara? The DOE has a pattern of incompetence in this area accompanied by a long string of screw-ups. DOE uses these test scores to determine which schools are failing and to require accountability. Shouldn’t the DOE be judged and held accountable for their performance in administering the very test they use to pass judgement on individual schools and school systems? It’s damn near impossible to criticize others when you are failing spectacularly to run your own shop in a competent manner.
RTP’s assessment: It couldn’t happen to a more deserving bunch of arrogant idiots.
More on this train wreck as it develops. But first…..
Take the Rocky Top Make-up Assessment Test
Since every student in the freakin’ state is going to have to take a make-up test because of the Major Fail that occurred yesterday, we thought it might be helpful for our readers (both of them) to take a practice test of their own as an expression of solidarity with the teachers and students who got screwed over.
The short quiz focuses on the individual perhaps more responsible than anyone else in the state for the recent
disaster: Chuck Cagle.
Question #1 – Reading Comprehension
Cash Cow Chuck Cagle is a lobbyist who gained previous notoriety making tons of money as the #1 conflict-of-interest lawyer/lobbyist in town, representing education giant Pearson while it tried to jam Common Core down the throats of every state in the nation and charge taxpayers billions in new textbooks and programs for the privilege.
Based on the above passage, would you say that Chuck Cagle is:
- A grotesquely conflicted piece of bovine excrement.
- An ethically-challenged lobbyist whose primary professional qualification is a law degree from a school that doesn’t allow him to practice outside the state?
- A flaming butt wipe?
- All of the above.
Question #2 — Math
Cash Cow Chuck Cagle now works as the Tennessee lobbyist for Measurement Inc, the company whose testing program crashed and burned yesterday. As such, he helped Measurement Inc. get a $108 million contract to create and administer that test while collecting a handsome fee for his services. Based on your calculations (please show your work), would you infer that Cagle and Measurement Inc:
- Are guilty of misfeasance, malfeasance and a whole bunch of other feasances we haven’t thought of yet.
- Should both be tarred & feathered and ridden out of the state on a rail.
- Should be required to pay back every dime they have been paid to date and assessed criminal and/or civil penalties until they bleed through the nose.
- Should be covered with honey and staked to the ground over the top of an ant hill.
- Should never be allowed back into the state Capitol.
(Hint: there is more than one correct answer. Circle all that apply)
Question #3 – Language Arts
Now that Measurement Inc.’s reputation has been totally destroyed in the Volunteer state, it has been highly recommended they change their company’s name (if for no other reason than for them to be able to travel through the state without taxpayers beating them to a pulp). The following are suggested new names for the company. Which one do you think is the most applicable?
- Measurement RED Inc.
- Mis-Measurement Inc.
- Unethical Charlatans Inc.
- Flaming Bags of Dog Poop, Inc.
Question #4 – Social Studies
Chuck Cagle has made a small fortune off taxpayers by representing companies who produce crappy, self-serving education products that damage the reputation of our state and our deprive students of a quality education. Despite this, he is welcomed with open arms in the offices of some legislators. Based on what you have observed, are those legislators:
- Harry Brooks
- David Byrd
- John Forgety
- Any other legislator who has previously had his/her brain surgically removed.
Time’s up. Put away your laptop — uh — pencil & paper, close your exam booklets and bend over and kiss your chances of getting into a prestigious university goodbye.
Test scores will be posted just as soon as Measurement INC and Chuck Cagle cash their last paychecks or until sometime after your sophomore year in college – whichever comes later.
To close this segment, we took a poll of taxpayers (okay, okay, the RTP crew went to Loser’s and asked every drunk in the place) and we came up with the following questions:
- Who is going to be held financially responsible for this disaster? Measurement Inc. got a $108 million contract to administer the test. How much have they been paid, and how much can/will we demand they pay back?
- It has been 24 hours since the crash. Why has Measurement Inc. not already been fired?
- Why is Chuck Cagle even allowed to enter Legislative Plaza? Shouldn’t all the troopers at the guard stations be given a picture of this creep with orders to shoot-to-kill if he tries to lobby anyone?
- How much of his $3 billion will Bill Haslam have to pay in order to buy a clue?
- Is anyone going to have to do a “perp-walk” over this? And if not, why not?
The RTP crew will offer more insights in later posts as information seeps out of the cesspool that has become the Haslam administration’s education policy.
Until then, we leave you with RTP’s next topic for discussion:
John Forgety: Representative of the 23rd District – or just Chuck Cagle’s butt-boy?
And no, we will not grade on the curve.