Republican War on Words: The New Yorker

14 10 2008

Anti-intellectualism writ large. Not my idea of good for education.

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4 responses

15 10 2008
JJ

Speaking of what’s good (or not) for education, here’s an education policy comparison of the competing Republican and Democratic school visions this year: “McCain Selling Discredited ‘Magic’ of the Market as School Solution”

Public education is a powerful Jeffersonian notion: the idea that the public makes a commitment to the education of its citizens and the care of its children. It doesn’t mean there can’t be ways of creatively bringing public and private together. But it has to happen in the right kind of policy environment with the right kind of fundamental driving principles.

When you look at the people involved in Obama’s education think tank — like Stanford’s Linda Darling-Hammond — you can see that he’s got folks who have thought long and hard on this business of teaching as a profession. There’s an understanding that in addition to monetary incentives, there’s also a number of other things to do to improve the lives of teachers. There’s the possibility for mentoring relationships, for collaboration, and the possibility of being involved in school reform and curriculum development. There are incentives in both candidates’ platforms, but the Obama plan shows a much richer, multi-dimensional understanding of what a teaching career is like and what it is that motivates people to do it and stay in it.

And here’s a similar comparison, from Education Week: “Candidates View Parental Role Differently —
McCain discusses choice in education; Obama stresses responsibility.”

18 10 2008
Deanne

Oooo, that was good commentary from The New Yorker! I’m glad I finally took the time to check it out. It lead me to LOL, literally! ;P

18 10 2008
Deanne

Ooops, it “led” me to LOL.

18 10 2008
JJ

If you liked that one, check out this new one (not about Palin, thank goodness, but like the one on words, it’s also about valuing ideas, complex thought and human creativity.) Food for Thinking Parents, especially when contemplating our untimed unschoolers! 🙂

Late Bloomers
Why do we equate genius with precocity?

by Malcolm Gladwell
October 20, 2008

Where Picasso wanted to find, not search, Cézanne said the opposite: “I seek in painting.”

. . .Galenson did a simple economic analysis, tabulating the prices paid at auction for paintings by Picasso and Cézanne with the ages at which they created those works. A painting done by Picasso in his mid-twenties was worth, he found, an average of four times as much as a painting done in his sixties.

For Cézanne, the opposite was true. The paintings he created in his mid-sixties were valued fifteen times as highly as the paintings he created as a young man. The freshness, exuberance, and energy of youth did little for Cézanne. He was a late bloomer—and for some reason in our accounting of genius and creativity we have forgotten to make sense of the Cézannes of the world.

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