This message is from Monty Neill at Fairtest. We all need to check out the following book on the story of Edison schools:
The Edison Schools: Corporate Schooling And The Assault On Public Educaton (2005) Routledge
by Kenneth J. Saltman
The story of the Edison Schools is a gripping tale of money, kids, and greed. What began in the 1980s as an enterprise to transform public schools quickly became a troubled business battling falling test scores and dismal stock prices. How did the most ambitious for-profit education company in U.S. history lose respect, money, and credibility in such a short time?
Revealing how American McEducation went from glory to crisis, The Edison Schools tracks entrepreneur Christopher Whittle's plan to introduce a standardized nationwide curriculum and cutadministrative waste.
Education specialist Kenneth J. Saltman finds that the critics' predictions came true in Edison schools across the country: Experienced teachers left in droves, students were virtually given answers to standardized tests to drive up scores, and difficult students were
Saltman uses the Edison saga to highlight key debates about the role of schools in American democracy and illuminate broader issues of privatization and cultural diversity. Showing how the profit motive helped created "Edron," the book will force teachers, parents, students,and general readers to reconsider the role of private money in this critical part of our public life.
* A full expose of the Edison schools, the largest attempt ever to privatize public education
* Uses the schools to studylarger issues ofaccountability, trust in our institutions, and the social role of publiceducation
* Uncovers the reasons for the collapse of Edison, from falsified score reports and accounting scandals to a near-takeover by right-wing radicals
Kenneth J. Saltman is the co-editor of Education as Enforcement, and author of Collateral Damage and Strange Love: Or How We Learn to Stop Worrying and Love the Market.