Schools for a New Century: A Conservative Approach to Radical School Reform

Schools for a New Century: A Conservative Approach to Radical School Reform

Schools for a New Century: A Conservative Approach to Radical School Reform

Schools for a New Century: A Conservative Approach to Radical School Reform

Synopsis

This book presents optimistic alternatives to the current educational reform movement which has not produced substantial improvement. Allen advocates structural reform of education in virtually every aspect--organization, staff, curriculum, and political accountability. His central proposal is for the establishment of a national system of experimental schools, well-funded for research, experimentation, evaluation, and demonstration, but with realistic operating expenses. He also supports the creation of a well-designed national curriculum that would enhance local control of schools.

Excerpt

By Terell H. Bell

Here is not a litany of woes but a bold blueprint for unprecedented changes to be made at both national and local levels.

This book will challenge the reader to face many common preconceptions and consider new approaches to educating the future citizens of the United States. Allen provides a starting point for a national dialogue. His contention is that we already have a national curriculum -- one that gives control by default to advanced placement examinations, textbook publishers, and college admission requirements. Allen cites trust as the most urgent issue facing educational reform. He urges us to establish mechanisms for selecting a group of men and women who can be trusted to prescribe the common curriculum elements and the basic framework needed for a successful life on the main streets of twenty-first-century America.

Dwight Allen asks readers to look at the costs of not having either a successful school system or the means to create one, the costs of not establishing a viable system of experimental schools. These costs are measured not only in dollars, but in wasted lives, declining competitive standards in the marketplace, confusion, and inability to capitalize on technology.

The book abounds with possibilities for transformation. For example, technology, though not a panacea, is an important but neglected tool. Allen leads us beyond the boundaries of our expectations . . .

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