There is simply no doubt that our Founding Fathers would have been shocked to discover that decadent Europe was more egalitarian—with greater mobility and shared sacrifice—than the United States.
The lesson of PISA is this: Neither of the world's highest-performing nations do what our "reformers" want to do. How long will it take before our political leaders begin to listen to educators?
We are, I do believe, in a fight over the most fundamental building blocks of democracy.
We must continue to have schools that are the center of their communities, where children are students, not products, and parents are citizens, not customers.
Where can teachers find such collegiality today? Where are the institutions or publications that are built around deep respect for the intelligence and inventiveness of teachers—and kids? Are they there, but I'm missing them?