Fixing Public Education
230 pp. ISBN: 978-1-61493-272-7
To be perfectly straightforward, all ten authors in this book, in their combined hundreds of years of experience in the American public school system, are convinced it is not going to work much longer—no matter how polite (or threatening) corporate America, politicians and ed-reformers may request, demand, or intimidate. Some of those who are appealing to “ramp up” education are genuinely concerned. Others feel righteous in bullying the playground’s defenseless kid: our educators. Realistically, it is not possible to change education to “catch up” with Finland, or Hong Kong or whoever you wish to compare our children with–nor do we need to catch up with anyone. That paranoia is a deliberate red herring by education re-formers, uninformed and ignorant politicians, and greedy corporate enterprises who have no compunction in seeing our children as little ATM machines. There are much better solutions than those proposed – which increase the stress and burden on an already over-burdened system – and one reason this book, Fixing Public Education, came into being. It started three years ago and has become a reality. It will be heralded. And criticized. And questioned. But it WILL start discussions in the right directions…and that is a lot.
We hope a few courageous communities will see the wisdom of this exciting, healthy, non-threatening way of educating and be willing to implement the January Education Model to show the world how learning can be enjoyable for everyone and will accelerate our Public school system beyond what we thought possible – And manifest America’s Edge that so many seem to worry about.
Paperback: Published February 2010
Angela Engel moves beyond criticism of public education uniting readers toward a vision of educating children that is holistic, intelligent, and empowering. Seeds of Tomorrow: Solutions for Improving Our Children’s Education offers reasonable alternatives to high-stakes testing. Engel promotes educational philosophies in support of differentiation and personalization rather than uniformity and conformity. She introduces school collaborative accountability models ensuring academic integrity and excellence on behalf of students, teachers, and our communities.
In a time of political transition and optimism, Americans are looking for the means to improve our nation’s schools. Engel acknowledges the interdependence between education, democratic citizenship, the global work force and the economy, the individual and the community. She seeks not to create consensus on a singular school model but rather to build a common framework. New decisions necessitate a clear understanding of where we’ve come from and where we’re headed.
Written for parents, teachers, administrators, students, and policy makers committed to children and change, the book is hopeful in its analysis of our current challenges: poverty, inequity, and budget shortfalls. It is also sensible in its examination of today’s proposals including performance pay, magnet schools, charter schools, and vouchers. Uniquely engaging and surprisingly entertaining, Engel’s combination of story telling and research data offers a comprehensive guide to cultivating future generations of problem-solvers and leaders.