Saturday, June 2, 2012

Seattle Schools Community Forum: The Reforms I'm For

Seattle Schools Community Forum: The Reforms I'm For:

The Reforms I'm For

We spend a lot of time talking about the reforms promoted by Education Reform Advocacy Organizations which we oppose. I also spend a lot of time correcting them when they say that those who oppose them are fighting for the status quo. So folks might wonder what reforms I actually support. It's a fair question.

I absolutely believe that public K-12 education in Washington, and across the country, needs serious reform. It is build on a model that, in turn, is built on the faulty assumption that the students will fit a narrow mold. The system is set up to expect and serve students who come able and ready to learn in a traditional school setting. The whole thing needs to be reconfigured around a different, more accurate, set of beliefs around who the students are, what they need, and how public schools can deliver it.

The solutions presented by Education Reform Advocacy Organizations, such as LEV, are not serious reforms. They do not address the problem. Some of them, such as charter schools, create an opportunity to bypass the problem – an opportunity which, sadly, often goes unused. Some of them, such as merit pay for teachers, have