Anybody with even a cursory interest in the 57 million children in America’s public school system should see the 2011 documentary Waiting for Superman. Davis Guggenheim’s documentary on failing American public schools succeeds on many levels. First, it’s a helpful overview to how the school system works. The complexities of federal, state and local power in public schools are made clear, and quirks like the tenure system in K-12 education are brought to light. Second, it succeeds emotionally. Following the stories of five families from low income areas, and their struggles to provide a decent education for their aspiring children, had my wife and I at the edge of our seats at the conclusion of the movie. Third, it succeeds as polemic. The film is obviously biased against teacher’s unions and in favor of charter schools and other public school alternatives. But it is biased with good reason. And this is the point of this posting: introducing competition, even mild competition, to the school system will reap great benefits...Read More
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