Finland is the new black. Or so it would seem, from the many accolades increasingly heaped upon it by education experts, who tout Finland's treatment of teachers and education as a model of instructional progress.
You'd think that that public television would support public education, but you'd be wrong. The Public Broadcasting System (PBS) has gotten in bed with the billionaires and conservatives who want to privatize our public schools.
As someone who has spent much of my life teaching, or writing about education issues, I thought, why not? It wasn't one of those polls where they were surreptitiously trying to sell me a product--or were they?
There is still much work to be done -- but there is no doubt the city's education system is on a better path because of the leadership of the past decade. Students and families in New York City -- and everywhere -- deserve a real debate on the issues.
Instead of results, we have gotten rhetoric, and our children have fallen further behind. It is time we adopt policy solutions that match the depth and complexity of the problems and address them head on.
The Zimmer-Anderson school board race attracted national attention because it was seen as a test of the effort by corporate power-brokers to run schools like businesses, a strategy that they and the media misleadingly call "school reform."
My journalism has set out to expose the ideologues and profiteers engaged in dismantling the democratic ideals of public education. And yet, I just got hoodwinked by Joel Klein and the Rupert Murdoch-owned company he leads.
Rupert Murdoch may have called Gov. Cuomo "chicken" for refusing to take on the city's teacher's union. But judging from his latest State of the City address, Mayor Bloomberg sounds like the real chicken for refusing to take on Ray Kelly.
"You can still walk into a kindergarten class in New York City on the first day of school, and simply on the basis of race and how kids are dressed, predict with frightening accuracy which kids are likely to graduate 13 years later."