When we talk about education reform and fail to mention race, we leave the opportunity to face a central piece of the racial achievement gap at the door. And that is not putting students first.
Let’s just be clear for a second: Millions of children living below the poverty line have NO access to quality early childcare to nurture their minds. They enter school already well behind their more affluent peers. That deficit is minimized (not solved, just lessened) by the quality programming on PBS, the flagship of which is […]
We debate testing, tenure, and “great teachers” ad nauseum. We one up each other over who is putting students more first than anyone else. We parse choice, accountability, and common core until we can barely stand one another. We do this, not because we are gluttons for punishment, but because we know learning matters, and […]
I just attended a brief webinar with the Carsey Institute on their recent brief that identifies patterns in childhood poverty using data from the U.S. Census American Community Survey. The brief is sobering to say the least. In short, despite the recession being “over,” poverty rates among children continue to rise, most dramatically in urban areas, among the unemployed […]
Q: What is the purpose of public education? Public education guarantees every child good basic education and equal opportunities to further learning. Public education also equalizes the differences that income inequalities and other socioeconomic characteristics create to different learners. In brief, public education is basic human right and basic service to all children and their […]
One of the unexamined dimensions of the history of the School Reform Movement is the role that Civil Rights law played in shaping its guiding assumptions and strategies. I was reminded of this the other day when reading an unpublished manuscript by an Oklahoma City based teacher named John Thompson, who pointed out that civil […]
“Poverty isn’t destiny,” U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan is fond of saying. Taken literally, it’s a ridiculous statement. If “destiny” is defined as an inevitable or predetermined end state, it only takes one instance of someone escaping poverty to refute the claim that poverty is destiny. Race isn’t destiny, either; but that’s little consolation […]