Monday, September 10, 2012

What’s Eating Public Education?

not just #highered eitherK-12 is in a state of siege. It's issues are our issues. Look at Chicago, teacher bashing, charter schools, de-funding and more. The problem is complex: solutions possibly more so. Understanding is a start. Perspectives on background and history  abound. Here's one set among many. Robert DeWitz writes,
page imageOur public education is under attack! K-12, Adult Ed, Community Colleges, Cal States, and UCs are undergoing systematic destruction to make way for privatization. The failings of public schools can largely be attributed to external pressures, largely from the corporate world, at the national, state, and local levels. The purpose of this article is to give an overview of the attack on Public ED and our common struggle to save it. For the sake of simplicity I will focus on California.
It’s hard to believe that less than 50 years ago the education in California was amongst the best in the world not to mention the fact that it was practically free. We had the funding then, but what changed? 
 read the rest of "What’s Eating Public Education?"at the People's Tribune August 2012 , page 8, plus Part 1 of  "The Hidden History of Industrial Education in America" by Severiano Manalo (brief introduction below)

The Underground History of Our Schools 
 John Taylor Gatto was a New York school teacher for thirty years. He resigned on the op-ed page of the Wall Street Journal ending his resignation letter with this quote: “If you hear of a job where I don’t have to hurt kids to make a living, let me know.” Mr. Gatto went on to write a number of books critical of our educational system, the most well-known being Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling. What did Mr. Gatto learn that was so disturbing as to make him quit his job?  
The origins of our schools go back to a man called Horace Mann. Mann wrote a report to the Boston School Committee in 1843 in which he praised the Prussian school system (upon which our American one is based (more)
Part II Democratic Schools
Democratic schools have at their core an innate trust in a child’s ability to direct his/her own learning however, like any democracy the schools do have rules. The history of democratic schools goes back to Russia where Leo Tolstoy set up a school for peasant children. (more)

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