Diane Ravitch

| June 22, 2010

I’ve recently discovered that the After Ed blog has a short video of Diane Ravitch discussing her latest book, The Death and Life of the Great American School System. (See below.)
It’s worth taking a look.
Not because of the content, which is much better served by reading the book, but as an exercise in positioning.
Now having the benefit of an actual response to the book’s provocative change of position, (which I wrote about here), Ravitch is better able to do what she does so well: place all the ideo-political reactions in the same camp with the fanciful promises of quick fixes.
Mind you, I agree with her about the shell game at work around choice. Her research is illuminating.
What the video condenses is the stance: everyone gets caught up in the distractions of the moment, while education itself is slow, incremental (neutral) work. Standing in the middle, Ravitch finds herself backed by teachers.
This strikes me as reasonable (if perhaps a bit self-elected): in-service teachers are hard pinched by the shifting terrain, often wishing they could just get on with the day to day teaching they feel comfortable with.
But isn’t this also a bit of a false choice? Reactionary politics vs. slow and neutral education. And where are the students in all of this? Not forgotten, I’m sure, but perhaps busy.

Reposted from After Ed TV. Written by After Ed Team.

Education historian, Diane Ravitch, gives an overview of her book, "The Death and Life of the Great American School System."