Posts Tagged: education
A massive delay in textbook printing in India’s southern state of Kerala has led to accusations of corruption in the government education ministry and violent protests. Government officials suggested schools print the books themselves, but for low-income areas this solution is impossible because of its high cost....more
Recently, several novelists have criticized the primary curriculum in the UK for teaching a brand of creative writing that is too “complex.” For the Guardian, Ella Slater explains why she agrees with such criticism, arguing that her primary education has made writing simple and direct prose difficult:
As someone now struggling with keeping my prose simple and fluent, I can only say that I regret that the primary curriculum left so much to the secondary.
Colleges and universities cannot be expected to solve America’s problems of inequity. They cannot repair broken families, or make up for learning deficits incurred early in childhood, or “level the playing field” for students with inadequate preparation. But they should be expected to try to mitigate these problems rather than worsen them—and one main reason they are failing to do so is their relentlessly rising cost.
Even though liberal arts degrees are actually good for business, Matt Burriesci (author of Dead White Guys: A Father, His Daughter, and the Great Books of the Western World) believes that supporters of the humanities should lay that argument to rest:
A liberal arts education … may not teach you how to change your oil or program a website, but it prepares you to learn any skill, and most importantly, to question how any task is performed, challenge conventional wisdom, and introduce new processes.
Students who read four to six books in a summer are more likely to maintain their reading skills between semesters. As a result, many schools develop summer reading programs to help stave off the inevitable intellectual decline students face during the summer months....more
Twenty homeless shelters serving NYC families will be getting their own libraries as part of a new initiative from the Departments of Education and Homeless Services. The project, supported by Scholastic and a number of literacy organizations, aims to address the needs of the city’s growing population of homeless children; last year there were over 76,000 homeless students in K-12 schools....more
Parents in one of the wealthiest towns in Texas are lobbying to get Ayn Rand into schools, and in a classic case of life imitating art (or art being chosen to reflect and enact a desired worldview, perhaps) they intend to do so at the expense of ‘The Working Poor,” a contemporary anthropological study by David K....more
A graduate of Chabot College, Tom Hanks defends President Obama’s new community college proposal, explaining the benefits of his free education in the New York Times....more
Though plenty of adjunct professors still teach students, the full-time, tenured, middle-class professor position is nearing extinction. Adjunct professors are paid at wages below the poverty line while the costs of the career—attending conferences, performing research, accessing academic databases—continue to rise....more
A new scientific study has demonstrated that learning to write by hand before learning to type helps in developing children’s brains, and the benefits stretch from childhood to adulthood memory-wise. Psychologist (and Rumpus interviewee) Maria Konnikova explains on the New York Times:
Cursive or not, the benefits of writing by hand extend beyond childhood.
Michael Gove, Britain’s Education Secretary, is rewriting Britain’s public school curriculum to be more British. To Kill a Mockingbird, Of Mice and Men, and The Crucible are among the titles being dropped from required reading lists.
“I put this in the context of what’s going on in Europe and the world at large, which is a growing nationalism, a growing suspicion of other people’s perspectives and ideas and values,” says Christopher Bigsby, professor of American Studies at the University of East Anglia and author of a biography of Miller....more
…over the past 40 years, despite endless debates about curricula, testing, teacher training, teachers’ salaries, and performance standards…there has been no improvement—none—in the academic proficiency of American high school students.
Also, “American high schools are even more boring than schools in nearly every other country.”...more
The reading skills of American adults are significantly lower than those of adults in most other developed countries, according to a new international survey. What’s more, over the last two decades Americans’ reading proficiency has declined across most age groups, and has only improved significantly for 65-year-olds.
In it, Tressie McMillan Cottom writes about the students getting swindled by “schools” like the one Mills worked for, who are disproportionately low-income women of color....more
“Québec has long been a holdout, but that era’s over. Which makes the students indisputedly right about one thing: the problem with ‘reforms’ like these is that they constitute an abandonment of that old saw, the projet de société.”...more
“In its breadth, depth and frank embrace of sexuality as, what Vernacchio calls, a ‘force for good’ — even for teenagers — this sex-ed class may well be the only one of its kind in the United States.”
A NY Times Magazine article on the state of sex education highlights a Philadelphia Quaker Friends high school teacher’s comprehensive approach to teaching sex ed....more