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An Education Wishlist for Obama's State of the Union

President Obama's widely expected to talk about immigration, the economy, and gun control during tonight's State of the Union, and if his...


President Obama's widely expected to talk about immigration, the economy, and gun control during tonight's State of the Union, and if his previous State of the Union addresses are any indication, education is sure to get some attention, too.

Veteran journalist Bill Moyers asked a collection of notable "writers, activists and academics to write parts of President Obama's speech" touching on a range of critical issues and NYU education professor and education historian Diane Ravitch took on plenty of education's hottest topics.

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Schools Don't Need Reform, They Need Revolution

Teen author Nikhil Goyal says now's the time to radically reinvent education.

In the summer of 2010 I took a three-week trip to India to visit family in Delhi and Calcutta. After I came back to the United States, I started to review the notes I'd jotted down from conversations I had with Indian students and parents on their frustrations with school. That September I started as a freshman at Syosset High School. For many years, my family and I had planned on moving into a community where there were high-ranking schools. But after weeks of nudging myself through school days, I was feeling very dissatisfied with my experience.

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A Bee You Cannot Eat: Education Reform After the SOS March

The march may be over, but the battle for public education is just getting started.

When 5,000 educators, parents, students, and other citizens concerned with the state of education come to Washington, D.C. ready to answer the call for change, you respond. When they come together in a coalition for educational social justice and activism, you listen. When you’re asked as a teacher to speak on behalf of these thousands—and the many more who couldn’t show up—you stand up and represent. More importantly, when students of all backgrounds deserve better, you fight for it.

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What The Wire Can Teach Us About the Huckleberry Finn Controversy

Why do we censor the language and ideas that students are taught in school while ignoring the harsh realities of their lives?


What do you get when you cross education expert, author and NYU professor Diane Ravitch with the HBO series The Wire, and then throw in the Huckleberry Finn controversy? A smart questioning of why it is that we censor the language and ideas that students are taught in school, even as we refuse to deal with the controversial things kids are exposed to in real life.

Ravitch is the author of the 2003 book The Language Police: How Pressure Groups Restrict What Students Learn. In the text, she details the great lengths school districts and publishing companies go to in order to sanitize the books, plays and poems students read. It turns out Huckleberry Finn isn't an isolated case of censorship. In a piece for Education Week's "Bridging Differences" blog, Ravitch writes,

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