Anna Atkins, March 24, 2007 (view all comments by Anna Atkins)
I work as an assistant teacher and this book rings so true.Thankfully,the school I work at isn't like some of the schools Mr.Kozol visited.The school I work at is kindergarten to 4th grade and it is all black.I mean it is like the school system wasn't even desegregated.The sad thing is,these kids don't interact with different races besides their own outside of school.The only white people they interact with is at the school.When these kids move upto the middle school,it will be a shock for them to see other races of kids beside their own.In our school system,we use some of the same workbooks like Test Ready and such in our school.I dislike the No Child Left Behind Act becuase in two of our grades there are over 25 kids in each room with one teacher and an assistant.It is ridiculous,there are too many kids in one room.They need to be split up,like two classes with 18 kids each.Plus if a teacher is trying her/his hardest and the kids still don't perform upto par,the school is frowned upon.Then they are put on probation,so someone from the state department comes and checks up on them.Our public school systems are in a sad state of affairs.The country with the best education system in the world is Finland.They don't even start school till age six and then at sixteen,they go to college or a vocational school.The colleges are free to all Finnish students.The United States needs to take a long hard look at our education system and take a page out of Finland's book.
Kids are kids no matter what color the skin.They fit in just fine with other kids.When I was growing up,the school I went to was a mix of kids and we got along fine.How does a child learn about other cultures if he/she is only around one type every day?I think also what would help,is if parents pitched in with the child's learning.It's not all upto the teachers, the parents have to be involved and committed as well.You can't put it all on the teacher.
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Rachel Lessem, March 19, 2007 (view all comments by Rachel Lessem)
Yet another passionate and beautifully written book from Jonathan Kozol. This should be required reading for the President and Congress. A disturbing portrait of what is going on in America's schools and how many children we are leaving behind. This book should provoke us all to do more for our nation's children, so that our educational system can live up to its promises.
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by Washington Post,
"A call for activism, The Shame of the Nation firmly grounds school-reform issues in the thorny context of race and concludes that the nation has failed to deliver the promise of Brown."
by Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Nickel and Dimed,
"Segregation is back, and only a writer of Jonathan Kozol's wisdom and passion can assess its terrible price, one child at a time. It isn't easy, but before we can craft a solution, we have to feel the shame."
by Los Angeles Times,
"Shines a spotlight on poor, minority children, sabotaged and isolated by an educational system tilted to slight them....His outrage ought to infect us."
by Chicago Tribune,
"A vividly written account from the frontlines of 'apartheid education.' It is impossible not to share Kozol's outrage."
Since the early 1980s, when the federal courts began dismantling the landmark ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, segregation of black children has reverted to its highest level since 1968. In many inner-city schools, a stick-and-carrot method of behavioral control traditionally used in prisons is now used with students. Meanwhile, as high-stakes testing takes on pathological and punitive dimensions, liberal education has been increasingly replaced by culturally barren and robotic methods of instruction that would be rejected out of hand by schools that serve the mainstream of society.
Filled with the passionate voices of children, principals, and teachers, and some of the most revered leaders in the black community, The Shame of the Nation pays tribute to those undefeated educators who persist against the odds, but directly challenges the chilling practices now being forced upon our urban systems. In their place, Kozol offers a humane, dramatic challenge to our nation to fulfill at last the promise made some 50 years ago to all our youngest citizens.
by Hold All,
Established in 1875, Sumner High School, the first high school for African-Americans west of the Mississippi River, thrived as a safe-haven nurturing the great aspirations of thousands of African-American youths and their families. Noting such alumni as Tina Turner, tennis legend Arthur Ashe, actor Robert Guillaume, and rock and roll architect Chuck Berry, Sumner High School provided a powerful springboard to limitless possibilities in an otherwise oppressive, segregated world. The Sumner Story: Capturing Our History/Preserving Our Legacy, examines the illustrious history of this unique school, illuminates the outstanding successes of its alumni, and illustrates the lessons of achievement as they apply to the modern classroom. It does all this through the words of those who experienced it first-hand: students, instructors, and administrators.
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.