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Download or Read Troublemaker: A Personal History

Read online or Download Troublemaker: A Personal History of School Reform since Sputnik (Full PDF ebook with essay, research paper)
by Chester E. Finn Jr.


Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781400828210
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
02/04/2008
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
376
Sales rank:
220,854
File size:
3 MB

Overview

 

Few people have been more involved in shaping postwar U.S. education reforms--or dissented from some of them more effectively--than Chester Finn. Assistant secretary of education under Ronald Reagan, and an aide to politicians as different as Richard Nixon and Daniel Moynihan, Finn has also been a high school teacher, an education professor, a prolific and best-selling writer, a think-tank analyst, a nonprofit foundation president, and both a Democrat and Republican. This remarkably varied career has given him an extraordinary insider's view of every significant school-reform movement of the past four decades, from racial integration to No Child Left Behind. In Troublemaker, Finn has written a vivid history of postwar education reform that is also the personal story of one of the foremost players--and mavericks--in American education.

Finn tells how his experiences have shaped his changing views of the three major strands of postwar school reform: standards-driven, choice-driven, and profession-driven. Of the three, Finn now believes that a combination of choice and standards has the greatest potential, but he favors this approach more on pragmatic than ideological grounds, arguing that parents should be given more options at the same time that schools are allowed more flexibility and held to higher performance norms. He also explains why education reforms of all kinds are so difficult to implement, and he draws valuable lessons from their frequent failure.

Clear-eyed yet optimistic, Finn ultimately gives grounds for hope that the best of today's bold initiatives--from charter schools to technology to makeovers of school-system governance--are finally beginning to make a difference.

 

Editorial Reviews

Washington Post
I love the fact that no one is spared [Finn's] acidic sense of humor. That makes him a first-class writer, and Troublemaker may be the best of his many books...The book offers one of the most enjoyable, astute and fair-minded reviews of the topsy-turvy course of our national effort to improve schools. It flavors that complex tale with the story of Checker Finn, a smart kid from Dayton, Ohio, who wisely attached himself to some of the most thoughtful political figures of his era and brought their practical approach to fixing schools to a new generation... These stories will not make Finn any less unpopular with people on both sides of our often bitter educational debates, but I wish we had more thinkers as aggravating and insightful as he is. All of us can learn much from him, and his book.
— Jay Mathews

Related Subjects

  • ">Education - History - General & Miscellaneous
  • ">Education - United States - History

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