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Why Is Education So Vulnerable To Gurus ?

January 18, 2014 by Tunya

Michael Fullan, a leading guru in the education field — books, consultations, system turn-arounds, etc. — said it best,  "People only call me a guru because they can't spell charlatan".

It’s amazing how gullible people in education are.  As long as there is a sweet-talker, with lots of edu-babble and gobbledygook, with solutions that will take 10-20 years, they buy it.  WHY?  Because, anything to delay the inevitable disestablishment of the bureaucratic dysfunctional system is worth buying into.

So, actually it’s not gullibility.  It’s practical, self-serving,  “mutual need” to support these gurus (charlatans – I’m sure people on this site can rhyme off a dozen names).  Gurus keep on working and chalking up the Air Miles, and “the systems” buy more breathing space to pad their bloated bureaucracies.   And the politicians, who DO HAVE SOME POWER, are just slavish patsies in the hands of sophisticated apparatchiks.

Except in Australia where the new Prime Minister and new Minister of Education have just launched a Review of the National Curriculum developed by the ousted Labor regimen.  These politicians want to determine what the public expects in education as they became convinced there was a “left-biased” worldview being fostered at present.  A Report is due in 6 months time.

Regarding Diane Ravitch — of course she “protests too much”.  Sol Stern of City Journal has probably produced the best treatment of how one person stood out in earlier education reforms as the voice of wisdom and knowledge and is now the opponent of practically all she stood for.

Again, it says a lot for the susceptible nature of the education system that they accepted Ravitch for so long.  This new wave of common core transformations, however, is not jumping on her protest bandwagon and anti-TFA barrage. 

She claims she is right to repudiate her previous certainties as she has seen “the light”.  But, Dianne, can’t you see the 800# gorilla, the elephant in the room?  Are you blind?  The teacher unions you champion must surely be acknowledged as part of the problem in public education.  Credibility is shot when a blind-eye is turned on their role in dysfunction. 

She has been asked to “atone” many times.   

[posted to Educhatter on topic of Teach for America, TF Canada, TF Australia ]



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