Sunday, September 9, 2007

The Business of Education

Here are some great comments from a friend of mine. (Reprinted with permission, of course)

It continues to amaze and disappoint me that school boards - and to some extent, the media - continue to view schools in "business model" terms. Schools are not a business. They don't work that way. We went through this with Suzuki being a charter school and every five years in order to have the charter renewed the onus was on us to prove that it was growing. It had very little to do with the excellence the students were achieving because of the environment (low class sizes), parental commitment, great teachers (often being paid less than their peers in the Teacher's Association.) It just came down to "show us the numbers." Enrolment went up, but it's hard to say whether that made the school more successful. Schools should be there for students and not the other way around. Frustrating.

Linda


1 comment:

Linda said...

This is a paragraph from Rick Salutin's article, "The Mystery of Teaching," printed in The Walrus, October 2007. Ultimately the discussion focuses on what makes a good teacher, but he makes a good point about education being under attack:

"One effect of the deficit hysteria and budget slashing of the late twentieth century was to throttle discussion about public education. People with a passion for it were reduced to fighting rear-guard actions to save what they could, holding bake sales so the kids would have textbooks or pencils. People who would have been happier attacking the system in order to humanize it were forced to fight for its mere existence. It has been everyone's loss."

Thanks for bringing your passion to the front-lines, Sue.