The National Forum   Donate   Your Account   On Line Opinion   Forum   Blogs   Polling   About   
The Forum - On Line Opinion's article discussion area



Syndicate
RSS/XML


RSS 2.0

Main Articles General

Sign In      Register

The Forum > Article Comments > The death and life of a school system > Comments

The death and life of a school system : Comments

By Phil Cullen, published 22/3/2010

Diane Ravitch, a prominent US education historian, has changed her mind about the current direction of school reform there.

  1. Pages:
  2. Page 1
  3. All
>> This is because Diane Ravitch ... has done what Time Magazine (March 15, 2010) describes as an ... unabashed 180

people should read this article warily. i don't know ravitch, i don't know what her position was, nor what her position is. but she did write an open letter, criticising these news reports. here is part of the letter:

"A couple of news stories say that I have abandoned almost everything I ever believed, a view that stems from a profile in The New York Times on March 3. A correction to that article was posted the next day, and it read: "An article on Wednesday about a surprising reversal by the education historian Diane Ravitch of almost every position she once took on American schooling misstated the number of books she has either written or edited since leaving government in 1993. It is 18, not 5." This characterization of my views was simply wrong. I did not do a "U-Turn" (as the New York Times headline had it) nor did I "recant" (as the Education Week headline had it) almost everything I had ever advocated."
Posted by bushbasher, Monday, 22 March 2010 8:59:53 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Phil,

You might also find this online symposium at The New Republic, with Ravitch and several critics interesting:

http://www.tnr.com/article/politics/pass-or-fail
Posted by Paul Bamford, Monday, 22 March 2010 10:24:00 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Thanks Phil for your article and the link to Ravitch's blog, and you, Paul, for the link you provided.
Bushbasher, a link to the quote you provided would be appreciated. Without knowing what her past position(s) were, the quote minus its context is not very illuminating. Having read the other links, it seems to me that she is contending that these recently stated views of hers are not new and don't constitute a complete U-turn.

But why all the fuss about Diane Ravitch? Most teachers could tell you the same things; they and many astute parents would have observed over the years that we slavishly follow the UK and/or the USA, usually by the time the 'reforms' (what a misnomer) have proved a failure.

The Finns have had a non-competitive public education system for many years; they don't have national testing or league tables yet Finnish students outperform those of all other countries in global testing of Literacy, Numeracy and Science. The Finns have a tiny 'rump' of private schools which are funded at the same grant levels as the state schools, but must accept all-comers, not just the rich. Only religious or Steiner schools constitute the private sector. Education, right down to pencils and paper, is totally free; it is based on equality, and a highly qualified (post-graduate level), well paid and universally respected teaching profession.

With NAPLAN testing of very dubious validity, and the inevitable league tables and teacher-bashing that are the corollaries, our students will become less educated than ever. They might, however, become quite good at doing NAPLAN tests.
Posted by Rapscallion, Tuesday, 23 March 2010 5:34:14 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
  1. Pages:
  2. Page 1
  3. All

About Us :: Search :: Discuss :: Feedback :: Legals :: Privacy