Exploring the Myths and the Realities of Today's Schools: A Candid Review of the Challenges Educators Face

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9781607098492: Exploring the Myths and the Realities of Today's Schools: A Candid Review of the Challenges Educators Face
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Exploring the Myths and Realities of Today's Schools presents a strong case regarding the strengths and successes of our schools, while also addressing the major challenges currently facing our teachers and school administrators. This sympathetic look at the daily work life of our educators directly confronts issues with our changing student population, teacher unions, poor family dynamics, financial inequities, and student performance on international achievement tests. The author offers data and insights that counter the conventional wisdom that significant improvements will occur simply by expanding charter schools, by implementing merit pay for teachers more widely, or by emulating foreign educational systems. The book offers recommendations for school improvement that are both practical and effective. While many books on public education are written from the perspective of academics or political pundits, this book offers perspectives from the viewpoint of teachers, school principals, school superintendents, and school board members. The author brings his experience and insights from forty plus years in public education as a teacher, principal, and superintendent to provide his from-the-trenches perspective on the true nature of public schooling in the United States.

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About the Author:

Richard McAdams served in seven school districts as a science teacher, a high school principal, and finally as a school superintendent (in three districts) during a 43-year career in education.

Review:

This book should be required reading for school board members, teachers and administrative staff. (John W. Hagen, Former School Board President, Octorara Area School District)

I am delighted to highly recommend Exploring the Myths and the Realities of Today's Schools as an interesting new book that addresses some persistent old (and new) issues. McAdams has written a readable and enjoyable book that touches on the cultural education issues of our day. Educators and members of the public who want a candid, inside leader's view of persistent issues with creative, thoughtful solutions will find them here. (John A. DeFlaminis, executive director, Penn Center for Educational Leadership, University of Pennsylvania and former superintendent of schools)

The book adds a new perspective to the ever-spirited discussion about the condition of our public schools. Parents, educators and school board members will enjoy this comprehensive view of both the successes of and challenges to today's public schools, (Kathy R. Fisher, former school board president, Radnor Township School District)

Dr. McAdams offers a comprehensive look at American public schools. This book blends past, present, and future perspectives on a variety of contemporary topics and issues facing today's schools. It weaves well-researched facts, experience-based tidbits and insightful recommendations into a concise, understandable format. (Bruce L. Sensenig, superintendent of schools, Cocalico School District)

McAdams' brilliance shines through with an insightful assessment of our education system. More important, he is able to deliver the report in an understandable and interesting format ... a must read for everyone involved in education: administrators, teachers, school board members, parents, and students. (M. Cynthia Quinn, CPA, Former School Board President, Coatesville Area School District)

McAdams, career school superintendent and former assistant professor, provides a status report on public education in the US. He presents an extensive analysis with his personal assessment of the major issues and challenges that the nation's public school system is facing. His inclusion of historical and contextual information assists the reader in comprehending the complex subject matter under discussion. To date, many school improvement efforts have failed to advance schools. This book offers an extensive review of numerous significant educational topics and issues including, but not limited to, teacher unions, merit pay, charter schools, vouchers, law, and finance. The book also discusses the role and impact of teachers, school administrators, schools and school boards, curriculum, and the changing nature of parents and children. The author's expertise as a school administrator and professor provides the reader with an insider's view of the educational problems, struggles, debates, strengths, concerns, and successes that occur in US schools every day. He concludes with numerous substantive suggestions for improvement. This book makes for valuable reading. Recommended. General readers; upper-division undergraduate students and above. (CHOICE)

Readers looking for anecdotes may find much to admire. (6/30/2011 American School Board Journal)

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