Author Topic: Should we *ever* spend extra for private schools? If so, when?  (Read 9991 times)

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Re: Should we *ever* spend extra for private schools? If so, when?
« Reply #20 on: July 25, 2020, 06:26:04 AM »
I'm currently reading "The Global Achievement Gap" by Tony Wagner. I should be done by the end of next weekend. So far it's good and I agree with the book's premise. If you were to go the private school route it better provide a good ROI. I went to a nationally renowned public high school and went to a private college. I think there's ways to encourage lifelong learning without paying an exorbitant amount.
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supportingmaps

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Re: Should we *ever* spend extra for private schools? If so, when?
« Reply #21 on: July 29, 2020, 06:36:26 AM »
I finished up Tony Wagner's The Global Achievement Gap and loved it. It was originally published in 2008 and its thesis remains true to this day. Before I begin my review I will preface my background to give my review more context:

I graduated from Whitney Young High school, a nationally renowned public school. I graduated from a private college with an accounting background and due to various factors I couldn't find work in the accounting industry so I spent the next 8 years working an assortment of jobs. I decided I had to go back to school to turn my life around so I began Lambda School's data science and machine learning program in May 2019.

Mr Wagner's thesis is there's 7 Survival Skills:
- 1. Critical thinking and problem solving
- 2. Collaboration across networks
- 3. Agility and adaptability
- 4. Initiative and entrepreneurship
- 5. Effective oral and written communication
- 6. Accessing and analyzing information
- 7. Curiosity and imagination.

Schools should bolster these skills instead of drilling students for standardized testing. The author is unsurprisingly a critic of No Child Left Behind, a law that at best had good intentions but at worst was a bandaid solution to America's education system. As previously stated, the book's original publishing date was 2008 and we are now in 2020 where technology is rapidly advancing and jobs that may have existed 5 years ago are being automated.

The author interviewed various groups such as students and teachers, masterfully supporting his thesis. In one instance a MIT student confessed that

Quote
too much of the wrong kind of work can be just as bad as not enough engaging work. The AP classes, by standardizing curricula, made all students' experiences and discussions the same. Teaching to these standardized curricula made students into passive receptacles because the teachers have these boxes full of facts and information that you need to master, and they spend the term pouring it into you. (Wagner 108)

The author offers his insider knowledge and here's a couple gems:
1) When he was completing his doctorate in education at Harvard he had an elective where the class looked at videotapes of teachers in their classrooms. The doctorates in training would discuss the videotapes and role play what they would act in the scenario. Mr. Wagner believes this role playing is the single most effective strategy for improving instruction for all schools.
2) Lack of adequate teacher preparation and support is considered the primary cause for the astounding public school teacher attrition rate.

To tie this book to what I'm currently learning at Lambda's data science and machine learning program is fitting.

- 1. Critical thinking and problem solving. Yes, this is encouraged in the data science program as we are learning how to code and solve problems like analyzing an Instacart dataset.
- 2. Collaboration across networks. This too is encouraged as there are collaborative activities between the web track and data science. There are optional hackathons 2 times a year to keep practicing.
- 3. Agility and adaptability. Nobody knows everything in technology so you will have to read documentation and keep up with what technology is out of date and what is growing in popularity.

As a side note entrepreneurship I never had any training that encouraged me to be entrepreneurial. I personally learn my mistakes and keep on marching on. Which brings me to my volunteer project in my signature (I highly recommend you check it out!).

The Global Achievement Gap has interesting implications on the American education system and in the context of this thread whether or not private school is worth it.

Relevant social media:
https://twitter.com/DrTonyWagner
https://www.tonywagner.com/the-global-achievement-gap/
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