Diane Ravitch Op-Ed Piece – No Silver Bullets in Education!

Dear Commons Community,

Diane Ravitch (Research Professor – NYU) has an op-ed piece in the NY Times that cautions against education reformers seeking silver bullets for turning around failing schools.  She takes aim especially at several schools mentioned by President Obama, Arne Duncan, Jeb Bush and Michael Bloomberg as more smoke than substance.  In most cases, these schools improved on standardized test scores because students were prepped for tests but showed little improvement in other areas of achievement such as college readiness.   We have seen this story play out several times here in New York City where education leaders have praised progress on standardized test scores yet upon graduation, students still need to take double and triple remediation courses upon entering City University.

Dr. Ravitch’s conclusion is that beware the media hype of miraculous school reforms.

“The news media and the public should respond with skepticism to any claims of miraculous transformation. The achievement gap between children from different income levels exists before children enter school.

Families are children’s most important educators. Our society must invest in parental education, prenatal care and preschool. Of course, schools must improve; every one should have a stable, experienced staff, adequate resources and a balanced curriculum including the arts, foreign languages, history and science.”

Well stated!




Comments are closed.