Tag Archives: Public Good

Not Voting in a Time of Crisis

School Board elections are upon us here in Los Angeles. Elections will be held on March 3rd. There are seven Board seats, each representing a different part of Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). Four of the seven members are up for reelection. There are three contested seats. I know the incumbents who currently hold […]

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The Role of Laws and Policies in Maintaining the Status Quo

Today I turn my attention to federal and state laws and policies, particularly the ways in which they are implemented that inadvertently (or possibly intentionally) maintain the status quo. I am choosing to talk about law and policy and the implementation of law and policy because they are inextricably intertwined with each other. A law […]

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If I’m Not Teaching You, I Should Be Fired

Yesterday I said that I was going to spend four days talking about “the ways in which we (collectively) work harder to maintain the status quo than we do to change it.  I will discuss how our actions ultimately prevent us from reaching what we say are our goals.” I am going to spend today […]

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My Love for Public Education

I have been drawn to the field of education ever since high school.  When I was in 11th grade, I told my history teacher, Mrs. Nelson, that I wanted to become a history teacher. She told me she did not recommend I pursue this path. She said it was too much work, too hard, and […]

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Meet the “Mittelstand” and “Mitbestimmung”: Two Key Components to Germany’s Vocational Success

As I discussed last week, Germany’s model of apprenticeships and vocational education has attracted a considerable amount of media attention, especially in the United States.  Consequently, politicians are encouraging high schools and colleges to make their curricula more relevant to workforce demands.  In fact, one of the bullet points in President Obama’s American Graduation Initiative […]

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Considering the German Vocational Model

Proponents of vocational education often point to Germany as a model.  Germany certainly has an enviable unemployment rate (4.8% in December 2014), and its apprenticeship programs, conducted in tandem with vocational colleges, are often credited with this success.  As a result, influential business commentators like Harold Sirkin argue that the United States should emulate Germany’s […]

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Research Focusing of Promoting Equity

With the reversal, starting in the late 1970s, of this nation’s century-long trajectory toward economic and educational fairness, we need to rethink how to promote fairness and social justice. Given the pervasive use of market mechanisms in higher education and urban schools, this is especially urgent. In particular, the notion that there are pipelines to […]

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The Social Construction of Geography

I appreciate that geography can be an iffy matter.  The way we look at the world changes the way we look at the world.  Who owns those rocky islands between Japan and China?  Do we really have to list Crimea as part of Russia now? But some things are settled, even if we don’t like […]

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Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

I had the great honor this week to be asked by the Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics to participate in their technical review panel to develop an alternate measure of income for for-profit colleges and non-degree certificate programs at community colleges who fail the department’s Gainful Employment Eligibility criterion. I felt like […]

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Paying for College

Paying for College

Over the last several years we have rightfully been obsessing about student debt. Many students are taking on too much debt. The cost of college can also be a turnoff for poor students who understand debt but don’t necessarily understand foregone earnings. Why go to school for four years, incur debt, and end up with […]

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