PSAT for 9-24-13: Buy this book!


Diane Ravich’s new book, Reign of Error, just came out and everyone’s talking about it!reign-of-error2Diane has been all over the airwaves and in print. Parents Across America President Dora Taylor and PAA co-founder Leonie Haimson have written excellent reviews.

Dora’s review (also posted on the PAA site) neatly summarizes the book:

This book is a perfect reference guide to all things ed reform. Don’t understand much about test scores? Check out the chapters “The Facts About Test Scores” and “The Facts About International Test Scores”. Don’t know the history of Michelle Rhee? Go to “The Mystery of Michele Rhee”. How about the Parent Trigger? Read the chapter “Parent Trigger or Parent Tricker”. (Love the title).The best part is that after Dr. Ravitch explains all things corporate reform, she provides real solutions to the challenges of public education. The answers aren’t easy, there is no silver bullet as she explains, but the solutions are based on a wide range and depth of knowledge, history, experience and good old-fashion common sense.”

Leonie’s review includes a call to action that we’ll use as our PSAT for today:

To defeat the likes of Murdoch, as well as the other pirates and privateers circling our schools like sharks,  we need to become better organized and enlarge our allies. You will never find a more succinct and compelling book than Reign of Error, with a crystal clear analysis of the way in which our schools are being driven into the ground by the Billionaire Boys club of Gates, Broad, Walton, Murdoch and Bloomberg, and other ideologues and opportunists eager to join in.

So go buy a copy for yourself, but more importantly, give extra copies to family members, your neighbors or even your school board. Send the book to your local legislator or Congressman, especially if he or she tends to support whatever nonsense the Obama administration is pushing in the name of education reform.
Give a copy to your brother, who works in finance and thinks that charters are the magic bullet that will help students in struggling urban districts. Send it to your cousin, a recent college grad who wrongly believes that Teach for America is the best thing since sliced bread. Order the book for your mother, who knows better but isn’t secure enough in her facts to be able to argue these issues with her friends. Buy a bunch and give them to all your relatives – and then discuss the book at Thanksgiving dinner.
We need to engage and woo potential allies, to show them how corporate greed and delusional deference to the free market is destroying public education, just as it crashed the economy –and that there is a better way to support, strengthen and improve our public schools. We must win this battle for the soul of our education system before it’s too late. I can think of no better way to achieve this necessary goal than making sure that as many people as possible read this book.

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About the PURE Thoughts blogger
Julie Woestehoff is PURE's executive director. Julie's work has earned her a Ford Foundation award and recognition as one of the 100 Most Powerful Women in Chicago.