Share Your Thoughts on Diane Ravitch’s Book Slaying Goliath

Share Your Thoughts on Diane Ravitch’s Book Slaying Goliath

I am currently reading Diane Ravitch’s book Slaying Goliath: The Passionate Resistance to Privatization and the Fight to Save America’s Public Schools. I was wondering if anyone else is reading it. If so I would appreciate hearing your thoughts about her ideas. I also uploaded two podcasts. The one podcast is Diane Ravitch Joins the Klonsky Brothers on Hitting Left and the other is Diane Ravitch The Author of Slaying Goliath on the Literary Life with Mitchell Kaplan.

Here is an excerpt from Ravitch’s book. “What I had come to understand was that the root cause of poor performance in schools is not ‘bad schools’ or ‘bad teachers’ but poverty. Closing schools and firing their teachers and principals does not help students. If anything, it introduces damaging instability into their lives. The privatizers hail disruption and call it ‘creative,’ but it is neither creative nor beneficial (p. 8).”

Your thoughts?

 

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
5 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Maria Piantanida
Maria Piantanida
8 months ago

I, too, am reading Diane Ravitch’s book and am finding it a compelling critique of the “reform movement.” Ravitch describes what has been occuring in public education as “Disruption,” not “Reform” and lays out whose interests are being served by the disruptions–it is not the students, the teachers, of the communities that schools are meant to serve. Dr. Ravitch is a rare individual. For years she had been a proponent of a number of reform initatives. However, when she saw the damage these so-called reforms were causing, she acknowledged that she had been wrong. She apologized to those she had criticized because they had been challenging many of the reforms she had been espousing. How many scholars with such a public presence are willing to say, “I was wrong?” She deserves our respect for her integrity and the fierceness with which she is now defending public schooling. Anyone who is troubled by the effects of No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, and Every Child Succeeds will find Slaying Goliath to be compelling reading.

Maria Piantanida
7 months ago

I have now finished reading Slaying Goliath, Diane Ravitch’s book on The Disruption Movement and The Resistance. She cites many examples of teachers, administrators, parents, and union leaders who worked together to defeat proposals to privatize public schools. These are inspiring stories of Scholar-Practitioners who exemplify the quality of ethical stewardship. They did not wait for anyone to “empower” them. They owned the power they already had and joined in unprecedented numbres to oppose the proliferation of charter schools and vouchers. These grassroots voices were heard by governors and legislators who backed away from policies that would channel scarce resource for public education into the pockets of billionaires who want to profit from privitization. I hope you will find the time to read this very important book and share your thoughts about it.

Topic
Diane Ravitch's book continued
Mel
Mel
5 months ago

As someone who went to both private school (elementary) and public school (high school), I see the importance in both. I honestly believe that my private school prepared me in ways that would not have prepared me if I went to public. I am not saying that public wouldn’t have prepared me, but specifically for myself, private was what I needed. Both of the private and public schools I attended allowed me to grow into the person I am today. They provided structure for time period that I was attending them. I loved listening the podcast and being able to further my knowledge in areas that I may have already thought I knew quite a bit about.

Topic
Maria Piantanida
Maria Piantanida
4 months ago
Reply to  Mel

Mel,
Thanks for your response. I guess my wish for all students is to have the kind of quality education that you experienced whether in a private or public school. What I didn’t realize until I read Diane Ravitch’s book was the extent of efforts to shift public funds to for-profit alternative schools that seem to deliver far less than they promise. The current debates about reopening schools and what schools will received supplemental pandemic funding should be quite revealing. Maria

Monika Litynski
Monika Litynski
2 months ago

The book sounds like an interesting read, thank you for the recommendation. The first sentence of the excerpt you pulled really struck me, because it is true that poverty in many instances can be the deciding factor of whether a student succeeds or not. This is why our students especially need us to be on their side and help them to be able to overcome the challenges they face coming from such a situation. In my studies towards becoming a teacher, I have really had to shift my focus to this and figure out ways in which individually and collectively, as a teacher I can help those students be successful.