Sunday, December 31, 2006

A New Education System?

Current method called outdated by Amanda Paulson of The Christian Science Monitor.

Excerpt from the article

What if the solution to American students' stagnant performance levels and the wide achievement gap between white and minority students wasn't more money, smaller schools, or any of the reforms proposed in recent years, but rather a new education system altogether?

That's the conclusion of a bipartisan group of scholars and business leaders, school chancellors and education commissioners, and former cabinet secretaries and governors. They declare that America's public education system, designed to meet the needs of 100 years ago when the workplace revolved around an assembly line, is unsuited to today's global marketplace. Already, they warn, many Americans are in danger of falling behind and seeing their standard of living plummet.

In its place, the group proposes a series of controversial reforms:

  • Offer universal pre-kindergarten programs and opportunities for continuing education for adults without high school diplomas.
  • Create state board exams that students could pass at age 16 to move either on to community college or to a university-level high school curriculum.
  • Improve school salaries in exchange for reducing secure pension benefits, and pay teachers more to work with at-risk kids, for longer hours, or for high performance.
  • Create curriculums that emphasize creativity and abstract concepts over rote learning or mastery of facts.

Read the complete article at

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