Another Take on Tom Friedman’s Infomercial for SEED School

Diane Ravitch's blog

I wrote yesterday about Néw York Times’ columnist Thomas Friedman and his glowing report on his wife’s boarding school for African-American youth in Baltimore. I concluded that it was no model because of its cost ($40,000 per student), its attrition rate (about 64% don’t make it to graduation), and my sense that efforts to “save” a few students distracted attention from systemic problems of poverty, segregation, and racism. It is not reasonable to think that every impoverished black child should be separated from their families and communities, and it smacks of a sort of neoliberal colonialism. As one reader commented, it is reminiscent of the Indian boarding schools of the late 19th century, intended to strip Indian children of their culture and make them more like whites.

Well, it turns out I was a namby-pamby. Here is a column that eviscerates Friedman and his wife and their school. If I…

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1 Response to Another Take on Tom Friedman’s Infomercial for SEED School

  1. Just thought you might want to take a look at Andee Kinzy’s contribution to education. She homeshchools my grandkids, and created a theater group to bring language skills to the kids. It has grown into a venture that brings theater and Shaeskpeare to kids across Texas. ( I have watched it grow, Recently, I saw “Taming of the Shrew” with my 11 year old granddaughter playing Petruchio, and my 9 year old grandson playing three different roles… You should hear them handle language. I taught English in NYC and was the NYS Educator of Excellence, so I can say with some authority that THIS project provides education in language that WORKS,; from this experience kids LEARN critical analysis and listening skills that lead to focus, as well as social skills such as cooperation. Look it up, see how Improved has grown, and is adding writing programs. My granddaughter is currently in the girls group, writing her own play.

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