Designed to Fail (6): a history of American education

Part Six: Does America like its children? Unfortunately, that’s the conflict we all face.

Ira David Socol
Teachers on Fire Magazine

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Carnegie Summit 2024 — link: https://www.carnegiefoundation.org/carnegie-summit/ our presentation: Transforming Beliefs, Transforming Practice, Creating Equitable Schools Everywhere
The Carnegie Summit 2024 is about improvement and innovation: We’ll be there with a workshop on how to radically change public schools: Transforming Beliefs, Transforming Practice, Creating Equitable Schools Everywhere

“Robert F. Kennedy had come [to an Eastern Kentucky school] to learn about rural poverty. Instead, his arrival petrified the students, who sat riveted to their ancient desks with their heads down, afraid to even look at the great man and his entourage.

“He sized up the problem. Instead of making a speech for the media, Kennedy moved quietly among the students, stopping to reassure them. He’d squeeze a hand, murmur in an ear. “What did you have to eat today?’’ he asked one girl. “I know you’re scared,’’ he told a boy, “but It’s gonna be all right.’’’ — Rick Hampson, USA Today, 2018, “RFK’s visit to Appalachia, 50 years later: How Kennedy country became Trump country

Those of us involved in American education struggle with a massive problem. As much as I dislike the terms, “industrialized economies,” “advanced nations,” and “first world,” let’s simply say that among nations that might be described in those ways, none treats children worse than the United States. It’s not even close.

We like “our children” — via tribal and family links — we don’t like “other people’s children.” Those are trouble because, in the game of evolutionary…

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Ira David Socol
Teachers on Fire Magazine

Author, Dreamer, Educator: A life in service - NYPD, EMS, disabilities/UDL specialist, tech and innovation leader for education. Co-author of Timeless Learning