eJournal Woodring College of Education Western Washington University eJournal

Western Washington University


ISSN 1935-7699
Journal of Educational Controversy
VOLUME 6, NUMBER 1, FALL 2011 / WINTER 2012
FIFTH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

The Education and Schools our Children Deserve

Editor:  The Journal of Educational Controversy welcomes the new Dean of the Woodring College of Education here at Western Washington University --- the home of the journal.  Dean Francisco Rios brings with him a vision of the public mission of schools in a democratic society and the kinds of teachers that can make that vision possible.  We are pleased to introduce Dean Rios and his vision to our readers.

Dean Francisco Rios
Francisco Rios

The Future of Colleges of Education
Francisco Rios, Dean
Woodring College of Education
Western Washington University

EDITORIAL
The Education and Schools Our Children Deserve
Lorraine Kasprisin, editor

EDITORIAL
Nurturing the Brilliance in Every Child
Susan Donnelly, Guest Co-editor
Whatcom Day Academy

PROLOGUE
Editor: On October 9, 2009, Alfie Kohn was invited to speak at an event sponsored by the Whatcom Day Academy and the Explorations Academy in conjunction with the Journal of Educational Controversy. We have used the occasion of his talk as the impetus for this issue. For those interested in viewing Mr. Kohn’s lecture, we have provided a link to the video of his presentation. We are dedicating this issue to Alfie Kohn whose book title, The Schools Our Children Deserve, was the inspiration for this issue. Mr. Kohn has written a special prologue to this issue for our readers.

Alfie Kohn
Alfie Kohn

The Schools our Children Still Deserve
Alfie Kohn

CONTROVERSY ADDRESSED IN THIS ISSUE:
The politicizing of education at the national level has centered on issues of standards, accountability, global competitiveness, national economic growth, low student achievement on worldwide norms, and federally mandated uniformity. There has been little discussion of the public purposes of our schools or what kind of education is necessary for an individual’s development and search for a meaningful life. There is a paucity of ideas being discussed at the national level around topics such as: how school practices can be aligned with democratic principles of equity and justice; how school practices can promote the flourishing of individual development as well as academic achievement; what skills and understandings are needed for citizens to play a transformative role in their society. Without conversation at this deeper level about the fundamental purposes of education, we cannot develop a comprehensive vision of the kinds of schools our children deserve. We invite authors to contribute their conceptions of the kind of education our children deserve and/or the kinds of schools that serve the needs of individuals and of a democratic society.


SECTION ONE: ARTICLES IN RESPONSE TO THE CONTROVERSY

An Endarkened Learning and Transformative Education for Freedom Dreams: The Education our Children Deserve
Brenda G. Juárez, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Cleveland Hayes, University of LaVerne

The Teachers our Children Deserve
David Carroll
Western Washington University
Annie Parker
3rd Grade Teacher, Seattle Public Schools

Public Speech and Religion in the Public Square: Creating Citizens who can Breach the Wall
John F. Covaleskie
University of Oklahoma

Our Children Need. . ."Education for Resistance"
Geneva Gay
University of Washington

Is this What Democracy Looks Like? A Personal Retrospective  
Deborah Meier
New York University

Five Minds Our Children Deserve: Why They’re Needed, How To Nurture Them
Katie Davis, Harvard University
Howard Gardner, Harvard University

Dewey and an "Organizing Approach to Teaching"
Mary Finn
University of Buffalo

Universal Public Education—Our (Contradictory) Missions
P. L. Thomas
Furman University

The Dog Ate My Homework: Embracing Risk in the Chilling Climate of "No Excuses Schools"
Alice E. Ginsberg

An Education for Personal Autonomy in an Era of Standards-Based Reform
Josh Corngold
University of Tulsa

The Politics of Arrested Development: Deepening the Purposes of Education
Paul Shaker
Professor emeritus, Simon Fraser University

Link to a post on the blog of the Journal of Educational Controversy:
Obama’s School Choice: Shouldn’t the education that Malia and Sasha receive be available to all?
David Marshak
Western Washington University


SECTION TWO:  IN THE NEWS: THE CONTROVERSY OVER THE ARIZONA STATE LEGISLATURE'S BAN ON ETHNIC STUDIES

The Arizona State Legislation: HB 2281

DIRECTOR AUGUSTINE ROMERO TELLS HIS OWN STORY ABOUT EVENTS IN ARIZONA’S TUCSON UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

The Hypocrisy of Racism: Arizona's Movement towards State-Sanctioned Apartheid
Augustine F. Romero
Director of Student Equity and Co-Founder of the Social Justice Project
Tucson Unified School District, Arizona

The journal welcomes accounts from respondents mentioned in the article who may wish to offer other perspectives on these events for our Rejoinder Section or on our Blog.

To follow updates on events described in Augustine Romero's article, check out our news clips on "Arizona's Ban on Ethnic Studies" from the Blog of the Journal of Educational Controversy.


SECTION THREE: WHATCOM DAY ACADEMY: A LOOK AT A MODEL SCHOOL IN THE NATIONAL LEAGUE OF DEMOCRATIC SCHOOLS

Editors: The Educational Institute for Democratic Renewal, that houses the Journal of Educational Controversy, partners with the Whatcom Day Academy as participants in the National League of Democratic Schools.  Below is a glimpse of the school, its philosophy and its practices.

Whatcom Day Academy logo

A Multi-Media Presentation
Creating a School Meant for Children  
Susan Donnelly
Head, Whatcom Day Academy

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED MATERIAL ABOUT THE WHATCOM DAY ACADEMY FROM EARLIER ISSUES OF THE JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL CONTROVERSY

  • Children’s Imaginative Communities - Microcosms of Democracy, Susan Donnelly, Whatcom Day Academy 
  • The Elementary Classroom: A Key Dimension of a Child's Democratic World, Vale Hartley, Teacher, Whatcom Day Academy
  • Universal Power to Create (A Slide Show), Susan Donnelly, Whatcom Day Academy
  • Video Highlights from the 10th Annual Educational Law and Social Justice Forum, "Schooling as if Democracy Matters," April 30, 2008, Vale Hartley, Teacher, Whatcom Day Academy
  • Video Excerpt of the 2008 Tenth Annual Educational Law and Social Justice Forum: Democracy and Schools with Vale Hartley, Teacher, Whatcom Day Academy
  • Video of Innovative Democratic Practices in Schools with Vale Hartley, Teacher, Whatcom Day Academy

For a look at another school in the National League of Democratic Schools, check out our post on the blog of the Journal of Educational Controversy.


BOOK REVIEWS

Reclaiming Education for Democracy

Reclaiming Education for Democracy
By Paul Shaker, Elizabeth E. Heilman
Recipient: 2009 AERA Division K Award for Exemplary Research in Teaching and Teacher Education

Video Review by
  Rosalie Romano, Western Washington University
  Molly Lawrence, Western Washington University
  Vale Hartley, Whatcom Day Academy

Video Reviewers

Individual Chapters

THE AUTHOR RESPONDS
Author Paul Shaker Responds to the Video Review of his Book, Reclaiming Education for Democracy

The Death and Life of the Great American School System

The Death and Life of the Great American School System:  How Testing and Choice are Undermining Education
By Diane Ravitch  

Reviewed by
Chris Ohana, Western Washington University

Literacy with an Attitude: Educating Working-Class Children in their Own Self-Interest

Literacy with an Attitude: Educating Working-Class Children in their Own Self-Interest 
By Patrick J. Finn
 

Reviewed by
Rosalie Romano, Western Washington University

American Schools

American Schools: The Art of Creating a Democratic Learning Community
By Sam Chaltain
 

Reviewed by
Alice Ginsberg

Comparing Special Education 

Comparing Special Education: Origins to Contemporary Paradoxes
by John G. Richardson and Justin J.W. Powell

Recipient of the “Outstanding Book Award” for contemporary issues in curriculum by Division B of the American Educational Research Association (AERA)

Reviewed by
Ellen Brantlinger, Indiana University

The Next American Revolution 

The Next American Revolution:  Sustainable Activism for the Twenty-First Century
by Grace Lee Boggs with Scott Kurashige

A Book Review by
Victor Nolet, Western Washington University

A Personal Open Letter to the Author by
Molly Lawrence, Western Washington University

On blog now: Author Grace Lee Boggs with Scott Kurashige respond to the reviews of their book on the Journal of Educational Controversy Blog.  

Coming Soon: Reviewers, Victor Nolet and Molly Lawrence, respond to Grace Lee Boggs’ post and to each other on the Journal of Educational Controversy Blog.  

 

FILM REVIEW

Original Minds 

Original Minds
A film by Tom Weidlinger, presented by bullfrogfilms

Reviewed by
Tracy Thorndike-Christ, Western Washington University

 

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Visit our BLOG to join the conversation

See the REJOINDERS SECTION to read reactions to the articles in this issue.

See the TALKING WITH THE AUTHORS VIDEO SERIES for videotaped interviews with some of the authors.