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jerryking : public_education   16

An equation to ensure America survives the age of AI
April 10, 2019 | Financial Times | Elizabeth Cobbs.

Alexander Hamilton, Horace Mann and Frances Perkins are linked by their emphasis on the importance of human learning.

In more and more industries, the low-skilled suffer declining pay and hours. McKinsey estimates that 60 per cent of occupations are at risk of partial or total automation. Workers spy disaster. Whether the middle class shrinks in the age of artificial intelligence depends less on machine learning than on human learning. Historical precedents help, especially...... the Hamilton-Mann-Perkins equation: innovation plus education, plus a social safety net, equals the sum of prosperity.

(1) Alexander Hamilton.
US founding father Alexander Hamilton was first to understand the relationship between: (a) the US's founding coincided with the industrial revolution and the need to grapple with technological disruption (In 1776, James Watts sold his first steam engine when the ink was still wet on the Declaration of Independence)-- Steam remade the world economically; and (b), America’s decolonisation remade the world politically......Hamilton believed that Fledgling countries needed robust economies. New technologies gave them an edge. Hamilton noted that England owed its progress to the mechanization of textile production.......Thomas Jefferson,on the other hand, argued that the US should remain pastoral: a free, virtuous nation exchanged raw materials for foreign goods. Farmers were “the chosen people”; factories promoted dependence and vice.....Hamilton disagreed. He thought colonies shouldn’t overpay foreigners for things they could produce themselves. Government should incentivise innovation, said his 1791 Report on the Subject of Manufactures. Otherwise citizens would resist change even when jobs ceased to provide sufficient income, deterred from making a “spontaneous transition to new pursuits”.......the U.S. Constitution empowered Congress to grant patents to anyone with a qualified application. America became a nation of tinkerers...Cyrus McCormick, son of a farmer, patented a mechanical reaper in 1834 that reduced the hands needed in farming. The US soared to become the world’s largest economy by 1890. Hamilton’s constant: nurture innovation.

(2) Horace Mann
America’s success gave rise to the idea that a free country needed free schools. The reformer Horace Mann, who never had more than six weeks of schooling in a year, started the Common School Movement, calling public schools “the greatest discovery made by man”.....Grammar schools spread across the US between the 1830s and 1880s. Reading, writing and arithmetic were the tools for success in industrialising economies. Towns offered children a no-cost education.......Americans achieved the world’s highest per capita income just as they became the world’s best-educated people. Mann’s constant: prioritise education.

(3) Frances Perkins
Jefferson was correct that industrial economies made people more interdependent. By 1920, more Americans lived in towns earning wages than on farms growing their own food. When the Great Depression drove unemployment to 25 per cent, the state took a third role....FDR recruited Frances Perkins, the longest serving labour secretary in US history, to rescue workers. Perkins led campaigns that established a minimum wage and maximum workweek. Most importantly, she chaired the committee that wrote the 1935 Social Security Act, creating a federal pension system and state unemployment insurance. Her achievements did not end the depression, but helped democracy weather it. Perkins’s constant: knit a safety net.

The world has ridden three swells of industrialisation occasioned by the harnessing of steam, electricity and computers. The next wave, brought to us by AI, towers over us. History shows that innovation, education and safety nets point the ship of state into the wave.

Progress is a variable. Hamilton, Mann and Perkins would each urge us to mind the constants in the historical equation.
adaptability  Alexander_Hamilton  artificial_intelligence  automation  constitutions  disruption  downward_mobility  education  FDR  Founding_Fathers  Frances_Perkins  gig_economy  historical_precedents  hollowing_out  Horace_Mann  Industrial_Revolution  innovation  innovation_policies  James_Watts  job_destruction  job_displacement  job_loss  life_long_learning  low-skilled  McKinsey  middle_class  priorities  productivity  public_education  public_schools  safety_nets  slavery  steam_engine  the_Great_Depression  Thomas_Jefferson  tinkerers 
april 2019 by jerryking
Opinion | The Two Codes Your Kids Need to Know
Feb. 12, 2019 | The New York Times | By Thomas L. Friedman, Opinion Columnist.

A few years ago, the leaders of the College Board, the folks who administer the SAT college entrance exam, asked themselves a radical question: Of all the skills and knowledge that we test young people for that we know are correlated with success in college and in life, which is the most important? Their answer: the ability to master “two codes” — computer science and the U.S. Constitution......please show their work: “Why these two codes?”

Answer: if you want to be an empowered citizen in our democracy — able to not only navigate society and its institutions but also to improve and shape them, and not just be shaped by them — you need to know how the code of the U.S. Constitution works. And if you want to be an empowered and adaptive worker or artist or writer or scientist or teacher — and be able to shape the world around you, and not just be shaped by it — you need to know how computers work and how to shape them.....the internet, big data and artificial intelligence now the essential building blocks of almost every industry....mastering the principles and basic coding techniques that drive computers and other devices “will be more prepared for nearly every job,”....“At the same time, the Constitution forms the foundational code that gives shape to America and defines our essential liberties — it is the indispensable guide to our lives as productive citizens.”......“Understanding how government works is the essence of power. To be a strong citizen, you need to know how the structures of our government work and how to operate within them.”
African-Americans  civics  coding  constitutions  education  engaged_citizenry  foundational  high_schools  indispensable  individual_agency  life_skills  op-ed  public_education  questions  SAT  show_your_work  students  Tom_Friedman  women 
february 2019 by jerryking
Education Gap Between Rich and Poor Is Growing Wider - The New York Times
SEPT. 22, 2015 | NYT | Eduardo Porter.

For all the progress in improving educational outcomes among African-American children, the achievement gaps between more affluent and less privileged children is wider than ever, notes Sean Reardon of the Center for Education Policy Analysis at Stanford. Racial disparities are still a stain on American society, but they are no longer the main divider. Today the biggest threat to the American dream is class.....Financed mainly by real estate taxes that are more plentiful in neighborhoods with expensive homes, public education is becoming increasingly compartmentalized. Well-funded schools where the children of the affluent can play and learn with each other are cordoned off from the shabbier schools teaching the poor, who are still disproportionally from black or Hispanic backgrounds.
poverty  African-Americans  income_inequality  racial_disparities  real_estate_taxes  education  achievement_gaps  social_classes  public_education  sorting  segregation  geographic_sorting  neighbourhoods  children  affluence  upper-income  super_ZIPs  compartmentalization  the_American_dream 
september 2015 by jerryking
How Segregation Destroys Black Wealth
SEPT. 15, 2015 | NYT | By THE EDITORIAL BOARD.

The Federal Housing Administration, created during the New Deal to promote homeownership, openly supported these racist measures; it forbade lending to black people even as it subsidized white families that moved from the cities to the suburbs. Cut off from fairly priced home loan credit, black neighborhoods deteriorated and their values plummeted....Many discriminatory practices were formally ended with the civil rights and fair lending laws of the 1960s and 70s. But these were quickly replaced by subtler techniques that encouraged ghettoization, like channeling black families away from white areas and banks’ and mortgage brokers’ systematically pushing middle-income black families into high-cost, high-risk loans when they could have qualified for more affordable loans....This history of discrimination has taken an enormous toll on black wealth, as is shown in research by Douglas Massey and Jonathan Tannen at Princeton University’s Office of Population Research. In 1970, two years after the passage of the Fair Housing Act, for example, the average well-off black American lived in a neighborhood where potential home wealth, as measured by property values, stood at about only $50,000 — as opposed to $105,000 for affluent whites and $56,000 for poor whites.

By 2010, affluent African-Americans had passed poor whites in potential home wealth but had fallen further behind affluent whites. There is more than money at stake, Mr. Massey and Mr. Tannen write, because home values “translate directly into access to higher quality education given that public schools in the United States are financed by real estate taxes.”

Throughout history, ethnic groups have been able to translate economic gains into housing in better neighborhoods and advantages for their children. But for African-Americans, the researchers write, that transition has been “thwarted by segregation and the prejudice and discrimination that create and maintain it.” In other words, the damage reaches across generations and continues today
African-Americans  discrimination  education  Fair_Housing_Act  generational_wealth  home_ownership  housing  intergenerational  New_Deal  prejudices  public_education  public_schools  racial_disparities  racism  real_estate_taxes  redlining  segregation  wealth_creation  wealth_management 
september 2015 by jerryking
To Sir, with cynicism
Sep. 04 2000 | - The Globe and Mail | KATHLEEN GALLAGHER.

Where have all the idealistic young teachers gone?

We're coming perilously close to losing them. ...... I sense a different mood. Last September, when I faced my OISE class, I began the year with a simple question: "When you shared your decision to become a teacher with the people in your life who love you, what did they say?" The answers were ambivalent at best.

With teacher-shortage terror sweeping the country, teacher candidates .......very concerned, about what their lives will look like and how they will cope with low morale in the schools. They are concerned, too, by suggestions about their inability to teach to acceptable national standards......At a time of teacher-bashing and formidable moves to bring back more rigid standards, Hollywood asks us to put our hope in hero-teachers, teachers who take on the authorities, parents, and other "bad" (jaded, tired, cynical) teachers, in order to transform the lives of unhappy, unlucky children.

I worry about the superhuman qualities that these movies tell us make "good teachers." Unlike Meryl Streep, my student teachers will not have a swelling soundtrack underscoring their actions when they find themselves facing program cutbacks and the cynicism of colleagues. Everyone loses when teaching becomes an act of individual heroism. We make schools unhappier places when we tell new teachers they're on their own, rather than encouraging them to join with experienced teachers who have developed strategies, over time, to contend with the manifold contradictory expectations placed on them.....What critics of public schools seem not to know (and what good teachers have always known) is that people generally play the roles we assign them. If we worsen conditions in classrooms -- too many students, fewer support staff -- and add affronts to teachers' professionalism, we will inevitably lead teachers to develop lower expectations of themselves. The result will be the corrosion of a truly noble profession.
Colleges_&_Universities  contradictions  cynicism  demoralization  expectations  high_schools  idealism  letters_to_the_editor  OISE  public_education  public_schools  teaching  teachers  unhappiness 
february 2015 by jerryking
America’s elite: An hereditary meritocracy
Jan 24th 2015 | The Economist | Anonymous.

America has always had rich and powerful families, from the floor of the Senate to the boardrooms of the steel industry. But it has also held more fervently than any other country the belief that all comers can penetrate that elite as long as they have talent, perseverance and gumption....But now, the american elite is self-perpetuating by dint of school ties, wealth....Today’s elite is a long way from the rotten lot of West Egg. Compared to those of days past it is by and large more talented, better schooled, harder working (and more fabulously remunerated) and more diligent in its parental duties. It is not a place where one easily gets by on birth or connections alone. At the same time it is widely seen as increasingly hard to get into.

Some self-perpetuation by elites is unavoidable; the children of America’s top dogs benefit from nepotism just as those in all other societies do. But something else is now afoot. More than ever before, America’s elite is producing children who not only get ahead, but deserve to do so: they meet the standards of meritocracy better than their peers, and are thus worthy of the status they inherit....wealthy parents pass their advantage(s) on to their children....
Colleges_&_Universities  elitism  hereditary  Matthew_effect  nepotism  education  values  parenting  public_education  legacies  admissions  alumni  endowments  SAT  social_mobility  self-perpetuation  super_ZIPs  opportunity_gaps  college-educated  upper-income  compounded  meritocratic  cultural_transmission 
january 2015 by jerryking
Sandra Day O'Connor and Jeff J. Curley: Founding Principles in the Digital Age - WSJ.com
April 21, 2014 | WSJ | By SANDRA DAY O'CONNOR And JEFF J. CURLEY

The College Board and Khan Academy—a nonprofit digital education platform—will partner to provide "free, world-class test prep" for the new exam.

These changes may sound unrelated, but they represent a fascinating paradox in education today: What is old in education has never been more important, but it may take what is new in education to truly prepare students for success in college, career and civic life.

Teaching the Constitution and the nation's other foundational texts is as old as public education itself. America's public schools were founded on the idea that education is vital to the success of democracy. But these texts are demanding and complex. Understanding them takes hard work and concentration. The effort is invaluable, though, not least because it instills the discipline that will equip young people with the knowledge and the habits of mind necessary to become powerful actors in civic life.

Millions of students taking the SAT will now encounter texts like the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, as well as the writings of individuals from James Madison to Martin Luther King Jr. But old test-prep methods like flashcards and rote memorization will not be sufficient. Students will need more sophisticated tools to help them understand the material and engage with it. Digital technology will be essential to achieving that goal.
civics  SAT  Khan_Academy  high_schools  students  tools  digital_media  standardized_testing  engaged_citizenry  public_education  constitutions  hard_work  foundational  education  paradoxes  platforms  judges  lawyers  Sandra_Day_O'Connor 
april 2014 by jerryking
School Colors - WSJ.com
February 5, 2003 | WSJ | editorials.

A recent study by the Civil Rights Project, a liberal outfit housed at Harvard, uses the racial composition of inner-city schools to allege that the U.S. is undergoing resegregation. Our reading is that their findings say much more about the state of inner-city public education.

For starters, the U.S. is less segregated today than ever before....The racial makeup of our schools results not from the return of Bull Connor but from economics, immigration and birth rates. Middle-class blacks, whose ranks continue to grow, have moved into mixed neighborhoods.

Left behind in the major big cities is a minority underclass, whose numbers are inflated by recent arrivals who traditionally settle first among their own ethnic groups. During the 1990s, 11 million foreigners immigrated to the U.S., and more than half came from Latin America. Poor minorities are also the youngest members of our society. And they're having most of the children, which explains their high enrollment numbers. White enrollment rates have been steadily declining for decades.

The answer to today's increasing self-segregation is to fix the inner-city schools. Their dreadful quality is a major motive behind white -- and now middle-class black -- flight.
editorials  segregation  schools  urban  cities  public_education  underclass  self-segregation  African-Americans  middle_class 
august 2012 by jerryking
Building Wealth - 99.06
J U N E 1 9 9 9 |The Atlantic | by Lester C. Thurow. The new rules for individuals, companies, and nations.

Rule 1 No one ever becomes very rich by saving money.
Rule 2 Sometimes successful businesses have to cannibalize themselves to save themselves.
Rule 3 Two routes other than radical technological change can lead to high-growth, high-rate-of-return opportunities: sociological disequilibriums and developmental disequilibriums.
Rule 4 Making capitalism work in a deflationary environment is much harder than making it work in an inflationary environment.
Rule 5 There are no institutional substitutes for individual entrepreneurial change agents.
Rule 6 No society that values order above all else will be creative; but without some degree of order (institutional integrity??), creativity disappears.
Rule 7 A successful knowledge-based economy requires large public investments in education, infrastructure, and research and development.
Rule 8 The biggest unknown for the individual in a knowledge-based economy is how to have a career in a system where there are no careers.
Lester_Thurow  wealth_creation  entrepreneurship  rules_of_the_game  deflation  career_paths  Managing_Your_Career  cannibalization  disequilibriums  anomalies  JCK  unknowns  high-growth  change_agents  individual_initiative  technological_change  digital_economy  messiness  constraints  knowledge_economy  public_education  new_rules  capitalism  personal_enrichment  ROI  institutional_integrity 
november 2011 by jerryking
How to Spot Trends Before Everyone Else
September 20, 2011 | BNET | By Penelope Trunk.

Here are three ways to do it:

1. Notice crowds of unmonetized people.
I played volleyball in college, but my summers unfolded on the beach. Beach volleyball was big in Chicago. After college, I turned down many job offers and went to Los Angeles. I told people I was going to play beach volleyball. ....Beach volleyball was essentially my first startup. I ran it like a business, getting Fortune 500 sponsors and even a contract with Budweiser. Other players wondered why I spent so much time cutting deals and not as much time playing the game. I wondered the same thing. From there, I was able to identify my skills as a marketer and focus on my next business idea.

2. Notice crowds of disenfranchised people.
In the late 1990s, I was getting paid to write about my career. I was supposed to write stories about my wacky adventures in the work world. These stories wound up having huge appeal for kids just out of college. Turns out they did not think my career was so wacky; they wanted a career like mine that was about adjusting work to my personal life rather than climbing a corporate ladder. So I did some thinking: If people stop climbing a corporate ladder, then what will they do? If you're in that situation, "job hop more" is good advice, "stop job hunting" is good advice, and "live with your parents" is good advice, too. I was able to launch my most recent company, Brazen Careerist, because I could see what they wanted before they could.

3. Find what's broken before people will admit it's broken.
The public school system is not going to get fixed in our lifetime. The problems are too deep..... It's a great idea, but we can't afford it.

Once I saw this, I realized that homeschooling is going to be huge.....homeschooling is growing at a fast rate among mothers who have bachelor's degrees. And only about 35% of homeschoolers today do it for religious reasons......The first thing I did when I realized this trend was launch a blog about homeschooling, because I understand things by writing about them......public schools are the best babysitting system in the world, but as an educational system, it's only effective for educating kids to work in factories. This is not going to be a popular thing to say, but I'm sure this is going to lead me to my next business idea......Try to understand new, unpopular ideas instead of arguing against them. Because by the time an idea is popular, it's too late to start a business around it.
Fortune_500  homeschooling  howto  pattern_recognition  public_education  public_schools  trends  trend_spotting 
september 2011 by jerryking
When Schools Depend on Handouts - NYTimes.com
By MICHAEL A. REBELL and JESSICA R. WOLFF
August 25, 2011

Public education was built on the philosophy articulated by Horace Mann,
the Massachusetts reformer who pioneered the Common School: a system
“one and the same for both rich and poor” with “all citizens on the same
footing of equality before the law of land.” Today, that vision of
equality is in jeopardy....At least 23 states have made huge cuts to
public education spending this year, and school districts are scrambling
to find ways to cope. School foundations, parent-teacher organizations
and local education funds supported by business groups and residents
contribute at least $4 billion per year to help public schools
throughout the country....Although praiseworthy as a matter of personal
philanthropy, [donations by the mayor & others] is highly
distressing as a matter of public policy. It is disgraceful that
essential components of the public education system are now depend on
the charitable impulses of wealthy citizens.
austerity  cutbacks  equality_of_opportunity  handouts  Horace_Mann  philanthropy  public_education  public_schools  public_policy  school_districts 
august 2011 by jerryking
Detroit Schools on the Brink - WSJ.com
JULY 21, 2009 | Wall Street Journal | by By ALEX P. KELLOGG.
Shrinking District Heads Toward Bankruptcy to Gain Control of Its Costs.
A decision on whether to file for protection under federal bankruptcy
laws will be made by the end of summer, according to Robert Bobb,
Detroit Public Schools' emergency financial manager. Such a filing would
be unprecedented in the U.S. Although a few major urban school
districts have come close, none has gone through with a bankruptcy,
according to legal and education experts.
Detroit  turnarounds  bankruptcies  African-Americans  school_districts  public_education  schools 
may 2010 by jerryking
The Case for Saturday School - WSJ.com
MARCH 20, 2010 | Wall Street Journal | By CHESTER E. FINN JR.
Kids in China already attend school 41 days a year more than students
in the U.S. Now, schools across the country are cutting back to four-day
weeks. Chester E. Finn Jr. on how to build a smarter education system.


Nor is it news that "time on task" has a powerful influence on
educational attainment.
education  schools  students  public_education  school_districts  practice  dedication 
march 2010 by jerryking

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