In 1977—please don’t do the math!—I climbed aboard a school bus headed for a newly integrated school, part of an ambitious and court-ordered school desegregation experiment in Springfield, Illinois. In the latest episode, I explore what did and didn’t happen in Springfield, and why our vision of what’s possible today seems so much smaller than it did four decades ago. Complete transcript available here.
And in our special extended play version, available to our Patreon subscribers, we talk about why doing something about segregation will require re-thinking rigid metrics of school quality. To get access to extended episodes, reading lists and more, just click on this little button!
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Which is why I’m launching a podcast series!
That’s my new microphone!
I’ve spent the last two years visiting cities like Chicago, New Orleans and Philadelphia that are on the front lines of the often bitter battle over the future of public schools in the US. And what I’ve heard along the way is far more interesting, encouraging and honest than the talking points and stale exchanges that dominate the discussions about our schools. That’s why I’m launching a podcast series so that you can listen in and hear what I’ve been hearing.
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Closing the achievement gap requires any means necessary, even segregating minority students into special schools with all white teaching staffs.
Once upon a time there was something terrible in our nation’s schools called segregation. Reader: this separation of students into racial groups was viewed as a terrible scourge. In fact ending segregation in the public schools was viewed as so essential that it became the civil rights issue of our time.
I only bring up this *awkward* little trip down memory lane because in today’s upside down world of education rephorm, something rather strange has occurred. Whereas once segregation was seen as the enemy of educational progress, today it is upheld by achievement gaptivists as a necessary solution to closing said achievement gap. That’s because the achievement gap is the civil rights issue of our time, and must be closed by any means necessary, even segregation, the former civil rights issue of our time. Continue reading →