Comments: Boy, was Thomas right

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"...and motivated classmates." What exactly is John-Boy trying to say about our minority students?

Posted by Chazzy at July 17, 2007 04:01 PM

I recommend clicking on the link leading to the UK news article, as well as reading the comments. The Brits are not happy about this, to say the least.

I also clicked on the link which leads to the Ward Connerly article. Mr. Connerly isn't one of my favorite people, but I agreed with may of his points. Earthshattering, I know.:)

Posted by Miss Profe at July 18, 2007 06:30 AM

"Hope is all you have left when you're tired of being afraid." I don't know who to credit for that saying, but Edwards' *hope* certainly seems to fit here.

Posted by Darren at July 18, 2007 01:39 PM

Edwards' suggestion is born of some rather disturbing underlying assumptions, such as: poor students are unmotivated, merely sitting near wealthier students will somehow encourage poor students, and poor students are always taught by poor (in ability and experience) teachers.

There may be something to the stereotype that the contemporary poor tend to be unmotivated, but it can be reaasonably argued that to whatever degree this is true, it is true in large part because of government handouts and entitlements. At one time, being poor was thought not to be an excuse for any kind of laziness or bad behavior, particularly among the poor. In fact, many of the genuinely poor knew that education was their way to a better life, and worked hard to exercise parental influence on their children to work hard and rise above their modest circumstances.

While there is something to be said for peer pressure, these days it mainly works to the detriment, not the benefit of kids.

And while many teachers in urban schools may not be experienced or particularly capable, others certainly are, and not every poor child in America attends an inner city school, far from it.

There are mechanisms in place in every school district in America to solve problems at every level in the system. If the voters in those districts won't pay attention and demand accountability from those they elect to do the public's business, no amount of federal intervention, no matter how well intentioned, will be of help. The most frightening and destructive sentence in the English language remains "I'm from the federal government, and I'm here to help."

Posted by Mike at July 18, 2007 08:48 PM

The last time I was in the UK (ten years ago) there were still mandatory religion classes in the public schools. The folks there only know about us what they read in the newspapers and see in our movies and TV programs and, needless to say, they receive a somewhat distorted view.

Posted by Dave Schuler at July 25, 2007 09:59 AM