How funny. I had never really thought about it before, but as it turns out the United States has outsourced its entire educational system, top to bottom, to a single private corporation. It started with the ACT, SAT, and GRE, the tests used to determine whether or not students were qualified to be students (grade history collected over several years of coursework not being as indicative as a four hour timed exam, apparently). Now I find out that ETS, the company which creates these standardized tests, is also responsible for the Praxis exam, which is used to determine whether teachers are capable of teaching (once again, a standardized test apparently conveying more information than six months to a year of observed classroom teaching, and several years of grade history). I decided some time ago that I would not take any further tests provided by ETS. Now it appears that in addition to making it virtually impossible to enter grad school, this decision also means I can never teach in the United States at the primary or secondary level.
Welcome, oh welcome to life within the no child left behind act. Put together the teacher's score, and the student's scores on the state testing and you decide who the amazing teachers are. No more inspiration. No more innovative lessons. Just scores and more scores. Not that I'm bitter or anything.