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THE WORD: Accountability

John Thompson:  The NCLB-type accountability brand is being discredited, but we can not "get it right" without the wisdom of Stephen Colbert, who shows that the loud repetition of a word makes it true.

Mags_gqWe need to replace AYP with the accountability of a Consumers Report-type ranking system. A Marshall Plan for teachers and principals should incorporate the accountability systems devised by the National Board and the accountability systems of the College Board, and other sophisticated accountability systems that are irrelevant under NCLB.

We need incentives for accountability systems like the Toledo Plan that hold teachers accountable. We need to invest in early childhood and the social services prescribed by the Bolder Broader Approach, using the Harlem Children's Zone as the model for using the word accountable.

We need to invest in data systems, research, and turnaround efforts, requiring the word accountable to be programmed into every computer, and require every consultant's and researcher's Power Point to use the word accountable.

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Thanks - we'll get right on this. Should be doable.

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