Monday, June 11, 2012

Twitter debate Ravitch and Howard Fuller

I enjoyed reading this debate on Twitter between Ravitch and the incomparable Howard Fuller:


Fuller: Diane, how long has the traditional system been failing kids? Would u suggest it is now time to end it?


Ravitch: All kids regardless of race, income, etc should get a good education but poverty is a huge burden for children.


Fuller: No one in their right mind would say it is not a burden. It has always been a burden. It was for my mother &grandmother but my mother and grandmother knew an educ would give me any hope. When did some of y'all realize poverty is a burden?


Fuller: We are dealing with this issue as if it is breaking news. Come on now!!!


Ravitch: After 21 years of vouchers in Milwaukee, is plight of city's poor and African American families improved?


Fuller: I know u r not suggesting that the voucher program by itself was supposed to improve lives of the poor.


Ravitch: Since voucher students got state scores no better than peers in public schools, I can't see benefit to kids.


Fuller: It benefits the kids who are in good schools. The voucher program in MKE was supposed to give families choice. A measure of choice that families with $$ already had.  Because of the program some children have been able to access schools that have given them a good educ. -- an education that we hope will break the chains of poverty for them and their families. Let me be clear: an education in America guarantees u nothing. But I guarantee u that without it u will have nothing.


Ravitch: Some kids in Milwaukee public schools got better education than those in bad voucher schools.


Fuller: and some kids in good private schools got a better educ than kids in a poor traditional public school. Now what?


Ravitch: Don't you think that 21 years is a long enough time to reach a judgment about a novel treatment?


Fuller: Since when is providing choice a novel experiment?  Choice in America is widespread unless you are poor?


Ravitch: Interesting that top-performing and most equitable nations in world do not have vouchers or charters.


Fuller: I don't live in other nations I live here & I believe we need choice for poor families. If this is Diane u used to believe it too.


Ravitch: Howard, you have to read my latest book. And this:


Ravitch: Howard, please read this report of British study relevant to this issue:


Some other tweets on Fuller's blog (not part of his conversation with Ravitch): The fight for#edreform in this country is not for the "faint of heart." Change does not come easily. It never has and it never will. The people in this country who oppose real #edreform are relentless. If we intend to win we have to be even more relentless. Thinking today about young people who are dying a slow death because they are not being properly educated. Every child deserves a quality educ


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