Kids as Customers

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is creating a network of tuition-free Montessori-inspired preschools for low-income students. But his vision of schools that nurture the autonomy and creativity of kids is on a collision course with the Amazon workplaces Bezos has engineered for adults. Special guest: Mira Debs, author of Diverse Families, Desirable Schools: Public Montessori in the Era of School Choice. Transcript available here.

Note: Have You Heard listeners can get 20% of Mira’s book if they eschew Amazon and order direct through Harvard Education Press. Just enter the code DFDS21. 

And if you’re a fan of Have You Heard, consider supporting us on Patreon. Right now, if you subscribe at the $10/month rate, we’ll send you an autographed copy of A Wolf at the Schoolhouse Door.

Different Strokes for Different Folks?

No excuses-style charter schools, known for rigid discipline and a college prep focus have seen explosive growth in urban areas over the past decade. And supporters of the model point to parent demand as the fuel. According to Eva Moskowitz, CEO and founder of New York City’s Success Academy, parents—overwhelmingly Black and Latinx—enroll their kids in no excuses schools because they “believe in strict discipline.” But has anyone ever asked these parents if that’s really the case? In the latest episode of Have You Heard, we talk to researchers Mira Debs and Joanne Golann who focus on two very different school models: public Montessori and urban no excuses schools. They talked to parents at both kinds of schools and found remarkably similar views. “Parents from all backgrounds want strong academics AND respect for their children.”

Full transcript available here.

And if you like what you hear, please consider supporting Have You Heard on Patreon!

The Scratch n’ Sniff Guide to Phony Education Reform Groups

Just in time for the start of the school year, this handy EduShyster scratch n’ sniff guide can help you smell a phony ed rephorm group from a mile away…

The start of the school year will no doubt see the appearance of an alphabet soup’s worth of education reform groups popping up in a community or on a campus near you. But how to tell if said groups are  something rather less than meets the eye–let’s call them rephorm groups, shall we? This handy EduShyster scratch n’ sniff guide can help you smell a phony from a mile away. Continue reading →