Top Ten Scariest People in Education Reform: #7 – Sir Michael Barber, CEA Pearson
Sir Michael Barber of England, Chief Education Advisor at Pearson and Common Core promoter extraordinare, is also a global education standards promoter.
Did you catch that? Global standards. Barber wants every child in every country learning the same thing at the same time. Barber talks about “sustainable reform” as “irreversible reform” and he directs education policy makers to “make it so it can never go back to how it was before.”
Talk about scary. So, freedom advocates (including me) are regularly labeled “misinformed” by state school boards and governors. We jump up and down, shouting at the top of our lungs that Common Core creates irreversible damage to traditional education and to local autonomy. But our leaders assure us –I even heard the legislative lawyer advise our Senate Education Committee say that ”We can get out of Common Core anytime we like.”
But you see, Sir Michael Barber, CEA of the world’s largest educational sales company, is openly selling “irreversible reform.”
“If you want irreversible reforms, work on the culture and the minds of teachers and parents.” Otherwise, he says, people might repeal what’s been done because of their “wish for the past.”
Barber is praised and even quoted by the U.S. Secretary of Education. And Barber’s famous book, Deliverology 101, is dedicated “specifically for leaders of American Education reform.” (Yes, the reformers who listen to those who are on this “Scariest People” list.)
At a recent British Education Summit, Barber gave a speech entitled “Whole System Revolution: The Education Challenge For the Next Decade“. http://youtu.be/T3ErTaP8rTA He likes the word “revolution” and he uses it a lot. Just check out his twitter stream.
Meanwhile, another British management guru, the president of Vanguard, John Seddon, says Barber is wrong. Check out Seddon’s speech entitled “Why Deliverology Made Things Worse in the UK.” Seddon says, ”I don’t go around the world bashing Deliverology, but I think I should.” Why?
Seddon says that Barber’s “deliverology” imposes arbitrary targets that damage morale. He explains that Deliverology works because it’s merciless. Deliverology, says Seddon, is “a top-down method by which you undermine achievement of purpose and demoralize people.” http://youtu.be/2sIFvpRilSc
Barber uses his Deliverology method to push global education reform because, in Barber’s view, education reform is a “global phenomenon,” no longer to be managed by individuals or sovereign countries. Education reform has “no more frontiers, no more barriers,” he said at the August summit on education.
But as we all know, under the U.S. Constitution, education is to be state-led, not a federal and especially not an internationally-determined, issue.
Sir Michael Barber has not been dubbed “a control freak’s control freak” for nothing. Barber promotes global data collection and “whole system revolution” . See the chart during his summit speech, displayed at 12:06 minutes, and pinpointed as:
Systemic innovation + Sameness of standards + Structure + Human capital
(Whenever anyone uses the term “human capital” I run screaming from the room. It sounds like somebody owns the humans. It sounds like slavery. But add Barber’s passion for Mcstandardization and top-down structuring of systems and what do you envision? Not self-determination. Not freedom. Not local control.)
“We want data about how people are doing. We want every child on the agenda,” he says. At minute 6:05 (above) he specifies that “every child” means every “global citizen.” –What’s wrong with being a global citizen, you ask? Well, for starters, when you give yourself to the globe rather than to your nation, you lose your constitutional and property rights as they are swallowed up in a global governance system.
Absurdly, this British Pearson sales advisor, Barber, praises Common Core in American interviews. He says, “Can I congratulate the CFR for getting into this issue? I think it’s great to see education as an issue of national security…”
Then there’s the BBC interview. http://youtu.be/vTYMFzOv0wQ
In this clip, on the BBC show Hardtalk, Barber outlines what he sees as benefits of “private and public partnership (PPP).” (In a nutshell, why I’m against PPPs: voters have no voice; unelected business people make government policy but business people have no voter consituency, thus no accountability. But PPPs are what globalists promote. See: http://www.un.org/partnerships/unfip_partner.html )
Pearson “invests,” says Barber, by purchasing cheap schools in developing countries in partnership with governments. Pearson works hand in hand with both nongovernmental agencies (NGA and CCSSO) and with governmental agencies (U.S. Department of Education) to promote global education and Common Core. Because he sees global control of education and U.S. Common Core as one and the same.
Evidence? Look at 6:05 on http://youtu.be/T3ErTaP8rTA –the August Summit speech.
Barber says that every country should have exactly the same definition of what it “means to be good at maths”. At 4:00 he says that “citizens of the world” including every single child, “all 9 billion people who will be alive in 2050″ must know E(K+T+L) –which stands for (Knowledge + Thinking + Leadership) multiplied by the “ethical underpinnings” of environmentalism.
Barber explains that the “ethical underpinning” is “shared understanding” of earth “sustainability” that every child in every school around the world will learn.
Ethics, to Barber is all about global collectivism. So is he a communist? He certainly doesn’t use the word. But he does talk about the need for America to remove its gun rights, to remove diversity to replace it with standardization, to install top-down control of systems, and to promote thinking as citizens of the world rather than as citizens of nations. You do that math.
It wouldn’t be so bad if he was a loony bin off in a cabin. But this man directs curriculum production for the largest curriculum producer on earth. His company, Pearson, is everywhere. Pearson textbooks and technologies are in virtually every school and university in America. Pearson does teacher professional development. Pearson runs EnVision math. Pearson does early childhood education assessment. Pearson pushes millions to implement Common Core.
Common Core is very big business for Pearson. In fact, Pearson has long been partnered with Achieve Inc., a co-author of Barber’s “Deliverology 101.” And Achieve also helped write the Common Core. Achieve says the company joined “with NGA and CCSSO on the [Common Core] Initiative, and a number of Achieve staff and consultants served on the [Common Core] writing and review teams.” It’s BIG business.
The Wall Street Journal quotes Pearson’s CEO on Common Core as a gold mine:
“‘It’s a really big deal,’ says Peter Cohen, CEO of Pearson’s K-12 division, Pearson School, ‘The Common Core standards are affecting literally every part of the business we’re involved in.’”
When the BBC interviewer accused Sir Barber of leading Pearson to take over nations’ sovereign educational systems, Barber said, in defense, “I worked for government. I love government. I think government is a really important, a big part of the solution.” Of course he does. It’s all about Public Private Partnerships, the collusion of business and government under the guise of improving education.
Advising governments from the U.S. to Pakistan on how to implement nationalized education is Barber/Pearson’s specialty, according to the UK Guardian:
“… he has set up a US Education Delivery Unit (albeit as a private sector rather than government venture), co-authored books that claim to identify what makes national education systems successful, and taken the joint chairmanship of a taskforce in Pakistan to establish “national standards” in basic subjects. Now he’s becoming chief education adviser to Pearson, owner of Penguin Books and the Financial Times and also, in its own description, “the world’s leading learning company”, with interests in 70 countries…”
If Pearson were siphoning off American taxpayers’ money to sell books and technologies that would teach American to value America and to learn traditional math and other good things, I would not be writing this article; this is not a criticism of corporate greed.
It is a criticism of the American school boards, teachers and taxpayers who allow ourselves to blindly purchase countless Pearson technologies and teacher trainings when that organization and its curricular content is led by Sir Michael Barber, advocate of globally standardized education, of irreversible reforms, of global data collection, and of the dismissal of individual voices of representation through the promotion of public private partnerships.