Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Educational Vision Debate

Recently I have noticed a flurry of negative posts concerning Obama's choice of Arne Duncan to be his Secretary of Education (see below for links to a range of views on this pick). This choice has certainly hit a raw nerve with many progressive educators who hoped Obama's Secretary of Education choice would signal a move away from the status quo of testing, testing, testing, toward an educational environment that values creativity over standardization.

Certainly, Duncan's choice does seem to signal that the pendulum has not hit the standardization overkill wall quite yet, and that change has not come to America's public schools.

Of course, the pick may be more about friendship. The fact that Duncan studied at the University of Chicago Laboratory School does hint at a more progressive leaning than his record suggests. Only time will tell.

Here is a sampling of the online debate over Duncan's announcement:

In this corner--Change
Will Richardson
Alfie Kohn
David Warlick

and, in this corner--Arne Duncan
The New York Times
Joanne Jacobs

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