EduShyster interviews Joanne Golann, a doctoral student and researcher in sociology at Princeton who spent 15 months in a no-excuses charter school, studying its culture. After participating daily in the life of the school, interviewing students, teachers, and administrators. She notes that the no-excuses charter is a model of strict obedience and conformity that is widespread and focused on test scores. Teachers impose the model because it assures them control. If they let go, chaos might ensue. They can’t take that risk.
EduShyster asked Golann to sum up her findings, and she said:
“I found that in trying to prepare students for college, the school failed to teach students the skills and behaviors to help them succeed in college. In a tightly regulated environment, students learned to monitor themselves, hold back their opinions, and defer to authority. These are very different skills than the ones middle-class kids learn—to take initiative…
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