homeSaving K-12 - - ReviewsAbout / News / Contact1: English and Education2: In Praise Of Stark Lucidity3: Latin Lives On + Greek Lives On4: An Inquiry Into Modifier Noun Proliferation5: Noun Overuse Phenomenon Article6: Let's Get Serious About Education7: A Smashing Victory8: A Metalinguistic Inquiry Into F9: Philosophy Weeps10: MAX Your Creativity11: What's All This Talk About Digital?12: "MAP" ALERT13: Precision Worth Preserving14: THEORYLAND15: "1984"--The Cover Up16: The Plight of Poetry17: Understanding Robots18: Tao Te Ching (followed by "Notes on the Spiritual Life")19: Form, Function, Foolishness20: The Quizz (or: Facts Are Fun!)21: A Tribute to Rudolf Flesch22: On Bullsh*t & Sophistry23: The Creativity Question24: Birds Like Us25: Phooey on John Dewey26: How To Teach History, Etc.27: Ivan Pavlov-- Education Goes To the Dogs28: Tips for Helping Your Child Do Better in School29: The Rules Of Poetry30: The War Against Reading31: Teacher Liberation Front32: Teaching Science--Science Is Fun33: How To Help A Non-Reader To Read34: The Con in Constructivism35: Most Eminent Authority In Reading-- Dr. Samuel Blumenfeld36: The Assault on Math37: Whole Word versus Phonics38: Saving Public Schools39: How To Teach Physics, Etc.40: Sight Words -- Dolch Words -- The Big Stupid41: Educators, O. J. Simpson, and Guilt42: Reading Resources43: American Basic Curriculum44: The Myth of Automaticity45: The Crusade Against Knowledge & Memory46: American Public Schools Designed To Fail47: Teach One Fact Each Day48: You Still Teach Sight Words??!!49: How Do We Learn & Teach50: Leading Boys to Reading51: Learning Styles: How Educators Divide Kids52: The Conspiracy Chronicles53: Education Establishment Hates Math54: Preemptive Reading55: Letters From Teachers / oldest first56: Top 10 Worst Ideas In Education57: Cooperative Learning58: How To Teach A Poem59: Critical Thinking--If Only60: Smart Content Makes Kids Smarter61: Early Literacy Pack--ELP62: Prior Knowledge--Strange New Religion63: PROJECT-BASED LEARNING64: Head Start -- how would it be done right??65: How They Wrecked The Schools,COMMENTS / newest firstNew American Curriculum--Five Point Reform PlanA Bill of Rights for Students 2020The Education EnigmaREADING THEORYINDEX/ SITE SEARCH /GOODIESEducator of the YearImprove Education BLOG"Saving K-12" -- Reviews
Improve Education BLOG

I try to make everything on this site durable.
Interesting 5 or 10 years from now. The problem is where do I put
the short comments and rants that deal with day-to-day events? Maybe here.

18 Dec 08

Why Are The Schools So Bad: Educators versus Education

A lot of people have been wondering, since about the Great Depression, why are American public schools so bad?

Well, I’ve got about 100,000 words on the Internet trying to answer this question. But let me give you the two-word answer: American educators.

Sure, you can wade for weeks through their sophistries and excuses, but the final answer will still be the same. Our educators -- and I mean the Ph.D.’s at the top -- are responsible for creating our school system. QED: if the schools are lousy, the educators are the culprits.

Would you like a little background? Please look at “30: The War Against Reading” on This piece takes about 20 minutes, but then you’ll have a sense of how our schools created 50 million functional illiterates. Toward the end, this essay’s focus broadens to include math -- which is also a terrible mess -- and the general war waged by our educators against facts and knowledge.

Recently I've realized that the usual remedies pursued by educational reformers will not work. Typically, reformers suggest new policies or they point to some example which they consider “best practice.” Note that in both cases the reformers are assuming that the educators will listen. They won’t. They are the Great American Dinosaur, and change is not in their DNA.

I think now that the obvious solution is that we must deconstruct and discard all of their favorite bad ideas, particularly in reading and math instruction. I’ve just put a funny little video on YouTube titled “Why Don’t The Public Schools Do A Better Job?” This takes only three minutes and will give you a good sense of the education wars at this time. Here’s the link:

I’ll be writing a lot about these proposals, but for the moment I just want to paint a broad outline and to invite you to join me in my crusade to improve American education. Please contact me for a quote, an article, or a discussion of my next projects. I’m Bruce Price and I can be reached at Word-Wise Education, 757-455-5020. And I urge you, especially if you are an editor, publisher or talk show host, to devote a few more minutes each week to education. This is the big battle.



Link to web log's RSS file




Bruce Price's blog