My favorite line from that day occurred when Jackson said he had recently visited some very high-performing nations. At each stop, he asked authorities: "What do you do about bad teachers?" They consistently replied: "We help them."


We're all entitled to "our opinions," but schooling should take us beyond "mere" opinions into tentative conclusions that once again are held with care. Will this approach lead to dilemmas? Yes, yes, yes.


Diane Ravitch writes: "Somehow our old disputes about whole language, bilingual education, and the new new math pale in comparison to the coordinated assault by powerful forces on the very foundations of public education."


Deborah Meier writes: "But I'm amazed to read those prescient words of 1983 which were, I argued, that your book was a recipe for the wrong reforms: "more tests, more homework, longer school hours, mandated state requirements, stiffer standards for promotion, stricter discipline codes, merit pay, and sometimes, tuition tax credits."


The film "Waiting for 'Superman'" offers a one-sided and contemptuous view of public education, Diane Ravitch writes.


The opinions expressed in Bridging Differences are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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