What signs are you seeing of educational bureaucracies giving lip-service to the quality, inherent value and long term effects of the education they provide?
Evidence is everywhere. I see it in the declining literacy rate, increasing drop-out rate, and pitiful attendance stats. It's apparent to me in the over-emphasis on testing and other accountability measures. There are signs in the continual supply of ineffective leaders, managers, teachers and every other kind of professional.
How can bureaucracies defy their mandate to deliver high quality education to every citizen in their systems?
By not openly defying their mission. By giving plenty of time for professional development conferences, in-services and continuing education credits. By talking up the fine points of an education agenda when hiring new teachers or every time school board members or Superintendents are getting elected. By going through the motions of change efforts to improve what they do and what comes of it. By putting out fires when students or parents go into crisis-mode. By staging events to give the impression of accomplishments, progress and commitment to quality.
Why is lip-service preferable to integrity, substantive quality and well-deserved respect?
I doubt that lip-service is preferable to most teachers and academic administrators. Lip-service is an expedient, quick fix to silence critics, avoid criticism and appear competent. They are not malicious. They think they would show students and themselves more respect if they had the time and resources. They assume they cannot because they are constantly over-worked, pressured to do more and deprived of acceptance.
Is their a cure for lip-service, hypocrisy and scam-artistry?
There's no cure that can be bought, administered or facilitated. The problem is inherent to the structure of personalities prior to awakening. We naturally become hypocrites as we develop a self-concept, take pride in our accomplishments and feel confident in our decisions, abilities and ambitions. We simultaneously develop a dark side that betrays, opposes and even sabotages our good intentions. We say one thing and do another. We sell ourselves as a picture of respectability while acting out self-contempt "off-camera". We give lip-service to our best intentions and most praise-worthy ambitions. We aim to dramatically please others to compensate with how subconsciously displeased we are with ourselves.
How does lip-service ever go into remission?
The solution comes about by a spiritual crisis, loss of pride, failure of idealism, or nightmare episodes in one's life. It comes upon us like the transformation into a butterfly befalls the fat caterpillar. We give up our claim to fame for an unfamiliar humility, emptiness and innocence. We find within the respect we could not find in the world and the love we need to stop running scared. We stop pretending to be someone we're not and simply be who we are: unique in soul and joined in spirit.