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U.S. Public Schools: The Truth Shall Set You Free

science fair: what puts the 'pop' in popcorn By +Joy Pullmann at thefederalist

Here are a few lies it’s time to dispel about U.S. education. Pullman call them lies because they’ve been repeatedly publicly disproven but remain driving forces for education policy.

America’s rich, suburban schools are high quality. The schools everyone thinks are so great are only so because we compare them to our truly awful urban districts, rather than to actual peers.

Poverty is the root of America’s education problems. Harvard University economists compared state education spending and student achievement and found a correlation so small it was statistically insignificant.

Schools should teach generic skills like critical thinking and real-world application. You cannot have great reading skill that applies equally to a passage about the Civil War and to one about the lifecycle of amoebae. Your ability to read and understand any given passage depends on your background knowledge about the subject. No more rotten memorization!

Teachers are well-prepared professionals. Teaching coursework is among the least challenging available, yet prospective teachers need more remedial classes than their counterparts in humanities and social sciences.

Education is nonpartisan and amoral. The question is not whether schools promote certain philosophies, but how and which, and whether families should be forced to enroll their children in schools that actively contradict family beliefs.

Practically everyone should go to college. Public schooling is considered everyone’s birthright to the middle class. But America’s public education systems exist to provide general education for citizenship.

Those who run our schools say they care about children but year after year they continue to perpetuate systems that are demonstrably harmful to our kids.

Read the full post at thefederalist.com

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