BRIAN JONES: Well, it depends on the school, but I’ve seen schools that begin right away, that begin the first week of school, where they begin with pretests to try to, you know, tell the kids—if you ask a kid in Harlem—go to any school in Harlem and ask a young elementary school student, "What’s the point of school? Why are you here?" They’ll tell you, "It’s to pass tests, so that I can get a job."There’s nothing about—you know, I heard Jonathan Kozol speak at the Save Our Schools march, and he said something that really stayed with me. He said, at the wealthy schools, at your Phillips Exeter and Andover Academies, you know, those kids get to feast on the treasures of the earth. They get to enjoy literature and savor it. And they get to savor their savoring of it. And in our schools, too often kids are given these kind of cardboard passages that are meant to show them what a noun is. But there’s no joy in it. And there’s no—I would argue there’s no real learning.and this:
AMY GOODMAN: Talking about big business, big business and the tests
DIANE RAVITCH: Right. And the testing industry itself is a multibillion-dollar industry that has grown and fattened over the past decade. Pearson, for example, McGraw-Hill, the two big ones. Pearson has a $500 million contract with the state of Texas, another, I forget how many, hundreds of millions with Florida. Now they’ve just taken the New York contract. This is a multibillion-dollar enterprise. So, it will be very difficult to back away from what we’re locked into now, the kind of intellectual wasteland of so many of our public schools, because there is big business in keeping it this way.
Open source and open access schools, where families can pick and choose and get the services they need could potentially expand service while conserving by bundling services as needed by the people they serve.
- real school reform (and a changing view of attendance) homeschooling is the real legacy of holt, kohl, et al and why compulsory attendance laws are limiting our ability to change schools
- training passivity
- understanding school funding
- update on williams-bolar
- theft of education crimes
- voluntary attendance