Thursday, May 25, 2006

Alternate Names for "Hot Air"

Hot Air: How States Inflate Their Educational Progress Under NCLB is the new report from Kevin Cary at The Education Sector. I mentioned it a few days ago, and in thinking about it I've decided that the biggest problem the report has is this:

The name's just not catchy enough.

This may seem like a petty criticism, but think about the great studies over the years: A Nation at Risk, Why Johnny Can't Read, Genius Denied, etc. Like graduation rates in Houston, though, this is easily fixable by taking the main idea of the report (The Pangloss Index) and using it to create the title. That would be:

The Pangloss Index: How States Inflate Their Educational Progress Under NCLB

Ah. It draws you in, like a small gecko playing the guitar. I think, though, that if they were to play with the term "Pangloss Index" they could make the title even better. Some suggestions:

  • The Lipgloss Index: How States Pretty Up The Pig That Is Their Graduation Rates. Ever heard the expression, "It'd be like putting lipstick on a pig"? That's Carey's point about what the states are doing. For full effect the cover of the report should be a picture of Ms. Piggy.
  • The Toothfloss Index: Wisconsin is Run By Cavity Creeps. Here I'm imagining a hard-hitting flash video of little ugly grey men marching along chanting, "We make holes in data!"
  • The Hiptoss Index: Data From The States Is As Real As Professional Wrestling. If you're like me you're interested in knowing what WWE champion John Cena thinks about the No Child Left Behind Act, or how Mick Foley would measure graduation rates. Plus, by putting Hulk Hogan on the cover, you're guaranteed a wider market.
  • The Whostheboss Index: Yo Angela, Whazzup With the NAEP Scores Not Correlating With the Self-Reported Data from the States? Here, every state would be rated on a scale from one to five Tony Danzas, with five being Danza-riffic! Whether being Danza-riffic is a positive or negative thing will not be specified in the report so that bloggers can have something to talk about.
  • The Du Haus Index: Anyone Who Doesn't Think There Are Persistently Dangerous Schools in California Has Been Listening To Too Much Rammstein Music At High Volumes. Although wordy, this title has several hidden subtexts that are easy to see.
  • The Kate Moss Index: Calling 100% of Your Professional Development "High Quality" Means You Are On Crack. I mean seriously. C'mon. Maryland was just about the only state to get an honest answer because they asked their teachers if their professional development was worth it; the states saying 100% are being silly.

Reading research is fun!


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4:56 AM  

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