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View Diary: Ravitch:  The Death and Life of the Great American School System (90 comments)

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  •  "If a nation expects to be ignorant and free ... (6+ / 0-)

    it expects what never was and never will be."

    But then again, ignorant serfs are so much easier to kick around.

    I am really happy that Diane Ravitch sees the light. I did graduate work in educational philosophy, and she always stood out for me as someone who was smart and misguided. Looks like she now agrees with the latter part of my assessment.

    I'd say that fortunately - at least for now - the spirit of educational excellence and the desire to "educate the whole child" still holds sway among the public educators I talk with in my current work.

    Unfortunately in my own state, Virginia, sustaining this legacy looks to be a dicey proposition with the current economic reversals and Republican responses to them - by that I mean the devastating cuts now being moved through the General Assembly, cuts that are sure to be ratified by the pen of our new Governor (McDonnell - R, Regent University).

    I have long believed that the Reagan right in America wants to see the death of public education. Maybe Dr. Ravitch has come to the same conclusion after all these years.

    "Who am I to give science the brush?" Sugarpuss O'Shea

    by semiot on Sun Feb 28, 2010 at 05:59:16 AM PST

    •  I share your concerns about Virginia (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      semiot, barbwires, TexMex, CherryTheTart

      where I live, which is why I took the liberty of exercising my rights as editor in chief of the Virginia blog Blue Commonwealth to put a copy of this on the front page.

      do we still have a Republic and a Constitution if our elected officials will not stand up for them on our behalf?

      by teacherken on Sun Feb 28, 2010 at 06:01:30 AM PST

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    •  Agreed (4+ / 0-)

      and cutting funding for the Arts in schools and most recently to communities as well will deprive us of opportunities for culturally enriching our children and ourselves.

      Music, art, dance will become the playground for the rich and our kids will have to make do as they can.

      Democrats give you the Bill of Rights; Republicans sell you a bill of goods!

      by barbwires on Sun Feb 28, 2010 at 06:49:47 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  My wife and I have been going over the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        budget documents in our school district. Over the last two years, the system has had to absorb substantial decreases in income. Everything other than classroom instruction has already been whacked. The new round of cuts will go way beyond "cultural enrichment" programs - which, BTW, I think are essential to educating "the whole child." Now with the new round of state budget cuts being fronted, absent a substantial local property tax increase, we will be cutting the flesh off of basic education. And this in a mixed rural-suburban county system that is relatively well off. I certainly am willing to put more of my dollars into public education. But I have a 10 year old in the system, and so am "biased" I guess. I'm afraid, judging by the voting patterns in my county - e.g., Eric "The Smirking Whinebox" Cantor is my congressman - the chance of even a modest tax increase is fairly small.

        It's absolutely inconceivable that someone could call for "increased competitiveness" for our economy and simultaneously starve basic education. The only way it could happen is if 30 years of "blame the schools and teachers" rhetoric had prepared the ideological ground. Diane Ravitch has much to answer for for aiding and abetting the spread of that rhetoric.

        "Who am I to give science the brush?" Sugarpuss O'Shea

        by semiot on Sun Feb 28, 2010 at 08:09:01 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

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