"A child's learning is the funtion more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Michelle Obama - Dearly Confused

Michelle Obama is a smart lady, but she's sorely confused when it comes to some of her education views. Her speech today at a Florida gala, a $200/250-a-head event put on by the Florida Campus Compact, is illustrative of her confusion:
How do we show these young people that service can be more than just something that you do once in a while, that it can be more than just something that you do for a year or two after you graduate, but service can be a way of life, it can even be a career?
Yes, Michelle, building a better world through service (a very collectivist idea!) will require more than just a few years of service right after college. But then, Michelle, in some fit of confusion, you busted out these facts:
But there's also good news in recent years, and you all have seen this. We have seen more and more young people who are eager to do just that. Applications are way up for AmeriCorps and the Peace Corps, and last year, 25,000 young people applied for just 4,000 slots in Teach for America.
and:
It's why he's launched a new community innovation initiative to seek out the best, most effective non-profits in our communities -– organizations that could be the next Teach for America...
I'm not sure how Michelle can heap so much praise on TFA while claiming service is more than something you do for a few years after college. So which is it, Michelle? Do the TFAers need to learn service is more than their stint as temps in education, or is your little spiel about service a whole bunch of nonsense? You certainly cannot have it both ways.

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