Song Of The Day: Comfortably Numb

Pink Floyd featuring Van Morrison and The Band from Berlin, 1990. Awesome. (Video link)


Education And The Business Model: Pwned. Sound The Death Knell

Using the rules of economics, and assuming we must achieve universal post-secondary readiness, MN2020’s latest report, False Choices: Market-Driven Education Reform Doesn’t Work, demonstrates why free market thinking in education comes at a high price for students, parents and teachers.

The main problem, among many, is that school systems cannot function as free markets if we want to achieve universal post-secondary readiness. Free markets produce efficiency, not equity for all. Efficiency helps maximize profit, but what about students that aren’t profitable to educate?

As a result of competition-based thinking, many schools have focused on teaching-to-tests and advertising instead of broad based cognitive development that will provide students with the necessary skills to be successful in a 21st century workforce.

In moving Minnesota back toward a proven educational path, our latest report makes the following recommendations:

There is a place in education for efficiency, incentives, and innovation; however, policymakers must stop trying to achieve these competitive goals with a false, market-based approach.

Schools must adapt to achieve universal post-secondary readiness by focusing on initiatives that enhance teachers’ professional development and provide comprehensive teacher assessment and feedback.

Instead of using a false market-mentality as political cover to systematically defund schools, we must invest in education for the 21st century, using some of that investment to develop a comprehensive and fair teacher evaluation metric.

Charter schools have a place in the public education system as partners, not competitors, with traditional schools.
Michael Diedrich

Don Cornelius, R.I.P.

Don Cornelius, the producer and television host who created the television dance show “Soul Train,” was found shot dead in his Los Angeles home on Wednesday morning, and detectives from the Los Angeles Police Department were trying to determine if his death was a suicide.

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