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

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Teacher's Reminiscense Highlights How KIPP Is So Different

The education industry's education news outlet, Chalkbeat, has a short feature infomercial on an African-American KIPP teacher in Indianapolis. His name is Andrew, and Andrew grew up attending a socioeconomically diverse magnet school in Louisville, KY.  He speaks proudly about the benefits of such an education, and the irony presented by Andrew's current teaching job at an intensely segregated KIPP seems entirely lost on him or the reporter who wrote the story.

Andrew's story in Chalkbeat confirms the powerful learning and cultural benefits of socioeconomic diversity that we have known about since James Coleman's research began in the 1960s.  Sadly, Andrew is teaching in a segregated "No Excuses" school that offers children none of the diversity advantages that Andrew enjoyed while growing up in Louisville. 

Instead, Andrew's KIPP students remain rigidly segregated in total compliance chain gang schools that middle class parents would never allow for their own children.  The beneficiaries of KIPP's kind of miseducation are corporate foundations and the education industry, and the result is the building of charter business empires on the backs of the most vulnerable children, who must bear the burden of the paternalistic programs and Broken Windows philosophy that are aimed to culturally sterilize the poor.

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