If you were thinking of ponying up $20 to buy Jonathan Kozol’s latest book, Fire in the Ashes: Twenty-Five Years Among the Poorest Children in America, don’t bother. EduShyster has it on EXCELLENT authority that the book suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucks. While I haven’t actually read Fire in the Ashes, I know someone who has—Teach for America foundress Wendy Kopp—and she thought it was a real dud.
You see Kozol has spent the past 642 years writing about the scourge of poverty among America’s children, racial segregation in the public schools and inequities in education funding—all of which we now know DO NOT MATTER AT ALL. In fact just by mentioning these non-mattering factors Kozol is practically a one man excuse factory.
But his harping on the non-mattering is just the start of Kozol’s sins in Wendy Kopp’s eyes. The dude is also a real downer. While Kozol goes on and on and on and on and on about poverty and inequality somehow he missed the great news that Kopp and Kompany have been working well-funded wonders. The solution is as obvious as it is attractive to donors: recruit fresh-faced white college grads from privileged backgrounds and send them into the inner city to motivate Rachel’s children with their high expectations. Come on Jonathan, get with the program! Continue reading →