Glenn Beck Award,*

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shared today by Dr. Diane Ravitch and New Jersey Newsroom. Dr. Ravitch gave a speech last Thursday in New Brunswick sponsored by Education Law Center and Rutgers, and NJ Newsroom offered this journalistic depiction:

Ravitch — now research professor of education at NYU and author most recently of “The Death and Life of the Great American School System” — brought her audience to its feet more than once as she quietly, but with deadly force, demolished the cause and case of “education reform” in America…

Before beginning her low-key evisceration of education “reform,” Ravitch rejected its first premise, that American public education is failing, as “nonsense.” She detailed how the current graduation rate is now the highest in history, and achievement rates are going up, even given mainstreaming of special needs students and growing numbers of pupils who speak English as a second language.

*Award from NJ Left Behind in honor of Mr. Glenn Beck, formerly of Fox News, whom Jon Stewart describes as “a guy who says what people who aren’t thinking are thinking.”

Inconvenient Fact #1: “In most American cities, dropout rates for African-American and Latino males are well above 50%, and they’re less likely to enroll or graduate from college than any other group.” (Edweek)

Inconvenient Fact #2: “Each year, approximately 1.3 million students fail to graduate from high school; more than half are students of color. The graduation rate among students of color is as much as twenty-five percentage points below their white peers.” (Alliance for Excellent Education)

Inconvenient Fact #3: In Trenton Public Schools, for a local example, “according to new figures released by the state Department of Education yesterday… nearly one in two students who started high school in 2007 did not receiv[e] a degree last year.” (Trenton Times)

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