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    "Ben Chavis, the most politically incorrect person on the planet, is also, not coincidentally, one of the people most correct about inner-city education. Read this book by a man who gets results as a practitioner of the 'no excuses' approach to schooling."
    - George F. Will, The Washington Post columnist

    "…[T]here is much to be learned from this account. It is possible to restore public education to its mission of educating the nation's citizens. There is a message of hope and possibility in 'Crazy Like a Fox' that we should embrace."
    - Mitchell Kapor, The San Francisco Chronicle

    "Chavis [is] undeniably one of the country's finest educators…Thrust this book into the hands of all the parents you know and implore them to read it…Chavis is passionate, articulate, and entertaining. He's also right."
    - Mark Hemingway, National Review

    "American Indian [is] a rarity in American education, defying the axiom that poor black and Latino children will lag behind others in school."
    - Mitchell Landsberg, Los Angeles Times

    "To get the kind of results Chavis does in Oakland is a work of stripped-down genius. Ben's book reads like Ben talks: forthright, funny, irreverent, and wise. For anyone who cares about American education, for anyone who cares about America, Crazy Like a Fox is an essential read."
    - Jack Cashill, author What's the Matter with California?

    Archive for 'Public School Reform'

    Race to the Top updates/Joe Klein on the New York Union

    In a letter to various education organizations, Suzanne Immerman of the U.S. Department of Education wrote of the need for education reform and shared the following statistics: “Right now, 25 percent of our students fail to graduate high school, and as many as 60 percent of college freshmen need remedial education. Millions of jobs are […]

    Competition in the Classroom

    I recently read a piece from the fall 2009 edition of Education Next called “Reward Less, Get Less: Student performance gaps are easily explained.” The article came to my attention because it mentions Dr. Chavis in light of the documentary film he was in called Flunked. Flunked looks at what’s dragging down American public schools […]

    New Year’s Resolutions for Public Education

    Can anyone think of New Year’s Resolutions for public education? Focusing on middle and high school troubles, here are a few I’ve rattled off the top of my head: 1. Put the interests of students before the interests of adults. 2. Focus on academics. 3. Focus on classroom management and discipline. 4. Have high expectations. […]

    Detroit Parents so Outraged over Test Scores they want Teachers Jailed

    Wow, here’s a headline to get your attention: “Detroit parents want DPS teachers, officials jailed over low test scores”. The Detroit News ran this story on December 12, 2009, after outraged parents discovered their children had the worst math scores in the nation! The scores were from the National Assessment of Educational Progress test. The […]

    California and Massachusetts Buckle Under Union Pressure

    About a month ago I wrote about potentially promising legislation making its way through the California legislature. Bill SBX5 1 was intended to make California competitive for the Obama Administration’s Race to the Top funds. After the bipartisan bill passed in the California Senate, it died in the Assembly Education Committee–largely in part, it seems, […]

    New York’s Bloomberg Tries to Turn the Tide on Tenure

    The mayor of New York City, Michael Bloomberg, recently announced his intention to use student test scores as a determinant in deciding whether to grant teachers tenure. Of course the teachers’ union is vehemently opposed to the proposal. Bloomberg is looking to the New York legislature to require all the state’s districts to implement “data-driven […]

    Promising School Legislation for California?

    It appears there is a glimmer of hope for the school reform movement in California. The California Senate approved Senate Bill X5 1 last week, which repeals the state’s cap on charter schools and provides students at low-performing schools with the choice to attend better schools. It also “encourages school districts to reward teachers who […]

    Cato Institute Podcast, Roadblocks to Reform

    The Cato Institute recently aired a podcast called “A Charter School That Works.” Caleb Brown interviewed Ben Chavis about American Indian Public Charter School’s model as well as replicating successful charter school models on a larger scale. Ben pointed out some of the roadblocks to reform. One problem is that underperforming public schools get monetarily […]

    “Democrats and Schools”

    Last week Nicolas D. Kristof wrote a widely popular column–so popular in fact that the New York Times eventually cut off comments–on both the importance of high-quality teachers in the classroom and the ways in which teachers’ unions stymie effective education reform. For a look at “rubber rooms” and union strangleholds and a call to […]