Date: Dec 25, 2012 11:37 PM
Author: GS Chandy
Subject: Re: A Coordinator, A Facilitator, And An Educator Walk Into A Bar

Responding to Wayne Bishop's post of Dec 23, 2012 11:54 PM (pasted below my signature for reference):

I don't know anything about the 'progressive theories' of Lisa Delpit. I have studied a bit of Paulo Freire's work ("Pedagogy of the Oppressed"). For useful brief background, refer: ; also:

It strikes me that, for all the defects and deficiencies (and there are plenty of such) in the works of those who are excoriated by Wayne Bishop and others as 'progressive theorists', there is considerable value in their ideas. Underlying issues are:

A: IS IT POSSIBLE to extract the value we require (vis-a-vis our own specific situation from their hardwon insights) ?

B: HOW TO extract such value?

C: HOW TO leave out, easily, what may not be relevant or useful to us?

It is clear that the critics of these 'progressive theorists' have failed to study those theories in any practical way so that A, B, C above are accomplished - and hence their ignorant critiques.

The late John N. Warfield (Professor Emeritus, George Mason University [GMU], Fairfax, VA, USA) developed the basic 'science of systems' that enables us to do the above pretty well. More information about Warfield and his work is available at: and from the "John N. Warfield Collection", held at the GMU library - see;query=;

Based on Warfield's profound insights into systems science, I've developed a powerful systems aid to problem solving and decision making that enables any individual or group to choose Mission(s) of interest and to design practical means to accomplish them, starting out with the ideas currently available (using them for whatever they are worth). 'A', 'B' and 'C' noted above are accomplished.

This tool is called the 'One Page Management System' (OPMS); some attachments to my post at, which heads the thread "Democracy - how to achieve it" describe some actual and potential applications of this tool in a wide array of situations, ranging from 'educational systems' to 'governance' to 'personal improvement'.

To be honest and open about it, I must observe that Professor Wayne Bishop, Haim and Robert Hansen have raised doubts and questions about the potential utility of the OPMS. I claim that ALL of their doubts and criticisms arise only from their ignorance of what the OPMS is and how it works.

("Still Shoveling Away!")
Wayne Bishop posted Dec 23, 2012 11:54 PM:
> Education schools, meanwhile, were exposing several generations of English teachers to the ideas of progressive theorists like Lisa Delpit and Paulo Freire, who argued that the best way to empower children and build literacy skillsĀ­ especially for students from poor or racially marginalized householdsĀ­ was to assign them books featuring characters similar to themselves, and to encourage them to write freely about their own lives (see Peg Tyre?s ? The Writing Revolution,? also in this education report).
> <Snip>
> Another strand of education theory prioritizes getting kids reading rather than insisting they read high-quality books. Research by Sandra Stotsky at the University of Arkansas has found that the average American high-school student is most frequently assigned books at a middle-school reading level, and that the difficulty of assigned reading does not increase between ninth and 11th grade.

>There are other references for schools/colleges of education as a source of problem but they all are somewhat oblique. Regarding their importance, however, blowing them up was not my idea.

>It came from reading research expert and then US Department of Education's Assistant Secretary of Education Reid Lyon at a highly publicized panel discussion chaired by Secretary of Education Rod Paige:

> "You know, if there was any piece of legislation that I could pass, it would be to blow up the colleges of education."

> November 18, 2002 - Forum on Rigorous Evidence - Transcript, P. 84-85
> The Key to Progress in Education?

Lessons from Medicine, Welfare and Other Fields


And Wayne Bishop's MOST useful post heading another thread ("Education in the Atlantic"):
At 09:42 PM 12/22/2012, Wayne Bishop wrote:
> The Atlantic Monthly for October has a very interesting group of education articles entitled "Here's What's Working". I have included a couple of representative excerpts but, generally speaking, they make good sense. It does not mention by name "constructivism" but the idea is there; it does not work. In summary, conduct real school and actually teach. Horribly old-fashioned, I know, but it still is the open- faced "secret".
> Tyre
> Ripley
> "Teachers had thought it most important to care about kids, but what mattered more was having control over the classroom and making it a challenging place."
> "Of the 36 items included in the Gates Foundation study, the five that most correlated with student learning were very straightforward:
> 1. Students in this class treat the teacher with respect.
> 2. My classmates behave the way my teacher wants them to.
> 3. Our class stays busy and doesn?t waste time.
> 4. In this class, we learn a lot almost every day.
> 5. In this class, we learn to correct our mistake"
> Elie
> Goldstein
> Allen
> Wayne