This book is timely. It is personal. It describes real events led by passionate people who have made a difference. It gives hope.
Who is David and who is Goliath in the battle over public schools? The ‘Disrupters’, as Diane Ravitch calls them, are the corporate giants behind the move to destroy public schools. Ravitch devotes an entire chapter to those who seek to dismantle public schools and profit from public tax dollars. David is the ‘Resistance’, or the millions of parents, teachers, and students whose interest public education serves. They are the ultimate winners in this war for the heart of our democracy. It is a classic David vs. Goliath tale.
Ravitch asserts that David is triumphing once again. She backs up her assertions by dismantling claims that testing, rewards and punishments, and school choice will result in better educational opportunities for children. She underscores her points with examples of the failure of the Disrupters in Chicago, New Orleans, New York and Washington D.C. among others. She cites evidence to underscores how Disrupters shift course as each of their assertions fails. No meaningful achievement gains have been realized. Teachers have voted with their feet as teaching vacancies mount nationally. The greed and corruption of the movement to privatize schools can no longer be hidden. Communities and even states have put on the brakes. Choice has stagnated as charters close as often as they open, and parents remove children from ineffective private schools.
Ravitch credits the many volunteers who advocate for public schools and galvanize unease into action. Parents now understand that ranking students and schools on test scores creates few winners and a plethora of losers. They recognize that students who do not ‘fit In’ are excluded. They are uncomfortable about the lack of equity among increasingly segregated charter and private schools. They are angry about how money is siphoned off as public schools struggle to repair roofs and air conditioners.sikisxxx arap pornoZ
Perhaps the strongest message from Slaying Goliath is the power of ideas. In this arena, the corporate giants become small people with limited goals. The greatest strength of The Resistance, says Ravitch, is citizens who are motivated by “a passion for children, a passion for education, a commitment to their community, a dedication to democracy, and a belief in the value of public schools”.
This is no time for complacency. The power of the purse is undisputed. No doubt major propaganda campaigns will be launched by the Corporate Disruptors to regain their edge. It reminds me of the Franklin D. Roosevelt quote: …the only thing we have to fear is fear itself”. Slaying Goliath documents the assumptions and strategies of fear mongers. It provides hope that the nation is turning its attention to resolving inequities and restoring the joy of learning.
Good afternoon Sue,
I attended Diane Ravitch’s book tour in Washington D.C. December 29th. A lot of attention was given to Florida as a model of lawlessness and greed in school choice. You and Pat Hall were mentioned on pages 226 & 227 regarding the real estate practices of Charter Schools USA. Diane goes on to comment on your findings that about 40 percent of the public money received by the charter was not spent instructing children. Congrats to you both.
I told Diane the best thing that ever happened to the League of Women Voters was Sue Legg teaming up with her. Slaying Goliath should be read by every LWV education committee across the nation. The book reminded me of a quote from Edward R Murrow “one cannot accept that there are, on every story, two equal and logical sides to an argument”. As if both sides were equally valid, Diane is far more interested in reporting the facts and the truth about the so called “reform movement”.