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September 18, 2016

What Is the Purpose of School? Who Knows? Who Cares?

I can't help wondering what would happen if the question were phrased as a constructed response. What if we asked parents, childless millennials or retirees: What's the purpose of public education? Why do we collect taxes and build buildings and elect school boards and argue about phonics vs. whole language? What's the end game?

December 23, 2015

Merry Christmas, Ramone. You Represent Hope in a Seriously Messed-Up Education Nation.

How can we live in a nation where someone like Ramone Williams doesn't want to be a "distraction" to his fellow scholars? It's gratifying to read about all the families who offered Ramone a safe, warm place to stay over the holidays--and to think that, temporarily, he has enough money to finish a college degree and launch his adult life. But what about the other 56,000 students patching together their holiday "vacation" around donated food and temporary shelters--are they also trying to avoid being a distraction to the American academic conscience? Aren't we supposed to be Education Nation?

June 29, 2015

College for All? Ways--and Means.

So how do we--realistically, and for the right reasons--push citizens to pursue higher education? We might begin by asking why college, college, college is the go-to goal. I'm all for a more educated citizenry and workforce. But I'm not sure we get that by putting hip twenty-somethings with a shiny new degree into high schools, where their job involves talking kids into applying for four-year colleges, especially as costs are rising faster than uncontrolled floodwaters.

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