The idea is that while these practices may have some merit, they are having a devastating effect on teacher morale and satisfaction.
I stumbled on this op-ed piece through Google News, and it has made my day. Thank you very much, Professor Milner, for taking a close look at the unintended consequences of these popular reforms. I taught high school English for 37 years, and everything you say rings true to me.
I would just add that the most important element of ed. reform is always overlooked: we need to foster a love and habit of reading in students. That is the underpinning of education, and is almost completely ignored at the secondary level.