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Fri Oct 10, 2014, 09:32 AM

The Plot Against Public Education

http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/10/the-plot-against-public-education-111630.html#.VDfsXr6-WZZ

"When a multibillionaire gets an idea, just about everybody leans in to listen. And when that idea has to do with matters of important public policy and the billionaire is willing to back it up with hard cash, public officials tend to reach for the money with one hand and their marching orders with the other. Gates backed his small-schools initiative with enormous amounts of cash. So, without a great deal of thought, one school district after another signed on to the notion that large public high schools should be broken up and new, smaller schools should be created.

<snip>

This hit-or-miss attitudeóletís try this, letís try thatóhas been a hallmark of school reform efforts in recent years. The experiments trotted out by the big-money crowd have been all over the map. But if there is one broad approach (in addition to the importance of testing) that the corporate-style reformers and privatization advocates have united around, itís the efficacy of charter schools. Charter schools were supposed to prove beyond a doubt that poverty didnít matter, that all you had to do was free up schools from the rigidities of the traditional public system and the kids would flourish, no matter how poor they were or how chaotic their home environments.

Corporate leaders, hedge fund managers and foundations with fabulous sums of money at their disposal lined up in support of charter schools, and politicians were quick to follow. They argued that charters would not only boost test scores and close achievement gaps but also make headway on the vexing problem of racial isolation in schools.

None of it was true. Charters never came close to living up to the hype. After several years of experimentation and the expenditure of billions of dollars, charter schools and their teachers proved, on the whole, to be no more effective than traditional schools. In many cases, the charters produced worse outcomes. And the levels of racial segregation and isolation in charter schools were often scandalous. While originally conceived a way for teachers to seek new ways to reach the kids who were having the most difficult time, the charter school system instead ended up leaving behind the most disadvantaged youngsters."

<snip>

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Starry Messenger Oct 2014 OP
geardaddy Oct 2014 #1
bbgrunt Oct 2014 #2

Response to Starry Messenger (Original post)

Fri Oct 10, 2014, 09:59 AM

1. Bookmarking for later.

Looks like a good read. Thanks!

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Response to Starry Messenger (Original post)

Fri Oct 10, 2014, 12:29 PM

2. k and r.

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