Comments on: The myth of the rational education market Thu, 21 Jul 2016 07:57:19 +0000 hourly 1 By: coyotle Sat, 13 Aug 2011 01:04:03 +0000 TRUE THAT(!), teacherlady.

By: teacherlady Fri, 12 Aug 2011 22:34:03 +0000 Let’s stop blaming unions and address the real issue. Unions are there to protect teachers who are treated unfairly and work to help them attain a livable salary and reasonable benefits. Firing any teacher without following well defined procedures which require documentation is unfair. It is unjust when administrators do not use the negotiated agreement to evaluate, support and ultimately terminate employees who fail to do their jobs well. I have been teaching along time and I agree, there are teachers who should not teach but generally it is not the union protecting them. Sadly, I have seen two very poor teachers returned to the classroom because the union could clearly establish that there was no documentation to support termination. So, is that the union’s fault? I want the best schools for the children I raise and the children I teach, but damning a system that protects teachers from being replaced because inexperienced and less educated folks are cheaper or from being fired unjustly…that is only going to weaken the system.

By: Ideapete Fri, 12 Aug 2011 14:37:55 +0000 Moving to a higher viewpoint

As we know in the Quality Assurance industry ” A failure of Quality is a failure in Management ” the educational system is no different and ” A failure to produce Educational Excellence is a failure in Educational systems management. ”

The teachers sure are a part of the puzzle but not the only part or really even the driving part.

By: sandy12345 Fri, 12 Aug 2011 14:35:01 +0000 I am stunned. When I was a small boy (in 1953) my conservative father led the fight in Riverhead, New York against school centralization – claiming that this would diminish local, parental control. Now, it’s been so long since parents had any control that they have to be re-educated? Aren’t these the parents who graduated from these substandard schools?
The solution is always meritocracy – a system where local control is strong, but made so boring that only the best educated parents take part as an empowered school board. The rest of the parents need to stay home.

By: GLsword Fri, 12 Aug 2011 14:22:44 +0000 Sorry Alfred but there are no persons in the United States or Europe who really want to read that do not have the freedom and are not aware of the opportunities to become literate. It takes very little if any money, no teachers or formal schooling and certainly nothing from government.

Any normal human with some intelligence can find more reading material in local recycling bins than most school children had access to before the industrial revolution. Free volunteers willing to tutor are available on every block, on most playgrounds and often sitting on park benchs.

It is true that 25 or more percent of adult Americans refuse to put forth the effort needed to become literate but implying that it is society’s duty to change them is similar to the fantasy of prohibition. It is time for society to quit worrying about credentials and simply allow or better yet, require people to be responsible for the kind of life their choices have qualified them for.

Institutionalizing human from age 4 to 24 and coercing the third or so of them who would prefer to farm, lay brick, shingle or just be an at home Mom with children is just as much of a crime as forcing others to dig ditches in slave labor camps. We cherish diversity when it comes to race but condemn it when the minority is those who wish to learn in the real world versus a government approved classroom. Elon Musk is well educated; Richard Branson is not; but without BOTH of these foreigners and their America friends Burt Rutan and Co – the hope of commercial space development would still be limited to view graphs and Star Trek conventions.

I personally know many functional illiterates who can carpenter, weld, stone mason and even operate heavy equipment far better than any PhD I have ever met. Indeed my experience has been that for many critical skill jobs too much schooling and theory spoils the soap (sic – pun intended). By limiting the definition of education to “book lernin” we devalue manual labor creating a society that must “import” those skills and suffer the consequences of exporting the wealth they create.

By: REDruin Fri, 12 Aug 2011 13:15:46 +0000 Which isn’t true, and yet even if it were doesn’t mean we aren’t the best educated people in our history. It would be suprising if we WEREN’T the best educated…lots more college folks out there then ever before.
And scaffolding and mentoring is all good, but you’re ignoring a simple fact…you have to PAY GOOD PEOPLE GOOD MONEY…or they will also exert the free market and go where they can make a living.
And yet people have this remarkable aversion to paying teachers good salaries.


By: GLsword Fri, 12 Aug 2011 08:10:29 +0000 Parents are and have always been the key to education. To a much lesser degree communities influence the outcome. Beyond that it has little to do with what is good for “the children” and everything to do with corruption and power. The whole concept of public education is wrong. Government programs intended to reach out like giant hands of God are supposed to level the playing field. Instead these programs damage the very tenants of fairness and need they profess to uphold.

Not long ago, the Church on Sunday was the School House on Monday and City Hall on Thursday. Children were taught their community’s values and deciding whose prayers needed answering was never problem. Think Little House on the Prairie. It was those one room schools that made us prosperous and America the land of opportunity. The most important part is not money or even opportunity but the individual child’s desire to learn.

We now spend hundreds or thousands of times more on state sponsored monolithic education and the product is mostly dysfunctional. The world has changed and teaching the 3Rs from a shared McGuffey may seem quaint but Sugata Mitra studies (see his talk on show children can and DO learn without formal education.

Learning language is one of the most difficult challenges but infants do it outside of the classroom and without professional instruction. Their need to communicate with parents and siblings motivates learning. Repeated trial and error attempting to emulate those around them does the rest.

Schools would work as well if government got out of the education business. The only problem is the establishment won’t easily give up its benefits, perks and privileges even if it is FOR the children.

By: morphex01 Fri, 12 Aug 2011 02:32:05 +0000 Your final conclusion is pretty dismal. Most parents lack both the knowledge and the experience to evaluate curricula, faculties, and methods. And even those who do are all too likely to be trying to give their kids the education they wish they themselves had received, or, almost as bad, to avoid the education they received but later never needed in their work, e.g., algebra. Education of the young has to be about more than job training. At the same time, the schools have to resist the temptation and obviate the need to do jobs for the kids that the parents should be doing (like learning to balance a check book). I have used real, not made up examples. And, finally, music, art, and sports are as basic to one’s education as, to use an ignoramus’s expression, the three Rs: readin’, ritin’, ‘n ‘rithmatic.

By: PapaDisco Fri, 12 Aug 2011 02:27:09 +0000 Fix yer typo miz educaitor.

First, make all schools small and local. This encourages community and parental engagement and prevents kids from becoming anonymous in the huge, consolidated schools that are the norm today. Economies of scale are for cars not people.

Second, do all the other stuff the article talked about! Scaffolding, mentoring and retaining teachers is particularly important, but above all else if we can return schools to their localities we integrate them into the families and communities they serve. Small schools mean that students can’t hide out. Community integrated schools mean that administrators can’t hide out either. Everything else, even sub-par teaching, is survivable.

By: borisjimbo Fri, 12 Aug 2011 02:13:10 +0000 Gee, I thought parental engagement included helping your kids with their homework and encouraging them to study hard. As to this “blame the teachers” twaddle, while I’ve had some teachers I’d acknowledge were bad, the problem is that there is no pure one-variable experiment to test the hypothesis; there’s always that second variable, the student.