Saturday, June 11, 2011

Teacher Tuesday

Welcome back to the ZepBlog, where we don't let the nomenclature of arbitrarily-delineated time periods get in the way of a nice alliterative blog post title. Have a few edu-links for your Saturday morning...

Both Jon Walker and Matt Yglesias highlight a study in Science magazine showing multiple cost-saving benefits from early childhood education. Walker titles his post "Universal Preschool: An Actually Smart Longterm Deficit Plan:"
The study found that the children who received preschool were more likely to finish high school, less likely to be arrested and make more money. 
In addition to preschool clearly making these individuals better, it must have had an impact on the federal and local budgets. Higher incomes means more tax revenue and less spending on social services/incarceration.
Kos diarist AlecMN highlights the same study in his post "The Education Theocracy of Michele Bachmann haunts Minnesota to this day." Counterintuitively, though not surprisingly, the theocrats backing Bachmann are arguing instead that pre-school is harmful to children, and are thus opposed to any state funding of same.

Meanwhile, there is continuing fallout from EdSec Duncan's condescending open letter to our nation's teachers. But the criticism that really got under his thin skin came from the righteous Diane Ravitch. Duncan dissed her, and Ravich responded calmly. Ravitch, by the way, blogs regularly at Education Week.

Finally, speaking of EW, they host a whole suite of blogs, and this post is a nice linky JGRTWT:
What if the reform vessel you invested a decade's worth of time and money into appeared to be ineffective, at best--or even downright useless in getting us where we wanted to go? Would you sail on, emphasizing the need to stay on schedule? Would you offer federal money to states who agree to sign on as passengers? Would you launch a slick advertising campaign to allay concerns? 
Or would you change course--even rebuild the ship?

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