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Teaching the New Basic Skills


Teaching the New Basic Skills Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Fifteen years ago, a U.S. high school diploma was a ticket to the middle class. No longer. The skills required to earn a decent income have changed radically. The skills taught in most U.S. schools have not. Today the average 30-year-old person with a high school diploma earns $20,200, and the nation faces a future of growing inequality and division. andlt;Iandgt;Teaching the New Basic Skillsandlt;/Iandgt; shows how to avoid such a future. By telling stories of real people in real businesses and real schools, the book shows the skills students need to get decent jobs and how schools can change to teach those skills. andlt;BRandgt; Richard Murnane and Frank Levy begin by describing the hiring processes of best practice firms like Northwestern Mutual Life and Honda of America. In today's competitive economy, these firms search for applicants with the New Basic Skills — the mix of hard and soft skills that all high-wage employers now require. Murnane and Levy then shift their analysis to schools, asking how they can more effectively teach these New Basic Skills. By using case studies the authors show that popular school reform proposals — higher standards, school choice, national standards, charter schools, more money — can only be the first half of a solution to the nation's school problem. When they work as advertised, they force a school to change the way it does business. But each of these reforms needs a second half, a strategy for guiding schools toward the changes that raise student skills. andlt;BRandgt; The authors show how that strategy rests on five management principles that focus a school on student achievement. These principles grow out of the experiences of real schools doing the dirty work of educational reform: an elementary school in East Austin, Texas organizing low-income Hispanic parents around higher educational performance, an affluent New England community retraining its teachers, the state of Vermont devising new ways to measure the math skills employers require, a Boston high school creating incentives for low-income minority students to devote more time and attention to schoolwork. andlt;BRandgt; Superintendents, governors and business leaders agree on the importance of this book as evidenced in the forewords by Robert Galvin, Chairman of Motorola, and Thomas Payzant, school superintendent of Boston. For those who care about the success of U.S. schools, andlt;Iandgt;Teaching the New Basic Skillsandlt;/Iandgt; is an optimistic guide to the future and a must read.

About the Author

andlt;Bandgt;Richard J. Murnaneandlt;/Bandgt; is a Professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. andlt;Bandgt;Frank Levyandlt;/Bandgt; is the Daniel Rose Professor of Urban Economics at MIT. Both authors live in Newton, Massachusetts.

Table of Contents


Foreword by Thomas W. Payzant

Foreword by Robert W. Galvin and Edward W. Bales


Part I. Introduction

Chapter 1. Preparing to Meet the Future

Part II. Firms and Skills

Chapter 2. Skills for a Middle-Class Wage

Chapter 3. Five Principles for Managing Frontline Workers

Part III. Schools

Chapter 4. The First Principle: Agree on the Problem

Chapter 5. The Second Principle: Provide the Right Incentives and Opportunities

Chapter 6. The Third Principle: Train the Frontline Workers

Chapter 7. The Fourth Principle: Measure Progress Regularly

Chapter 8. The Fifth Principle: Persevere and Learn from Mistakes; There Are No Magic Bullets

Chapter 9. Getting from Here to There



Product Details

Levy, Frank
Levy, Frank
ank Levy
Murnane, Richard J.
Free Press
New York :
Aims & Objectives
Basic education
Career education
Career education -- United States.
Education -- Economic aspects -- United States.
Education - Assessment
Edition Description:
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
14 tables and figures t/o
8.44 x 5.5 in 16.59 oz

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Related Subjects

Education » Administration
Education » Assessment
Education » General
Education » Teaching » Guides

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