Clickety's Reviews > Push Has Come to Shove: Getting Our Kids the Education They Deserve--Even If It Means Picking a Fight

Push Has Come to Shove by Steve   Perry
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's review
Jul 05, 2011

did not like it
bookshelves: nonfiction, ownit, arc

Can I give a book NO stars? Please? This author apparently suffers from idiostalgia ... the idea that public education has gotten worse (it's improved) and that schools willfully hire the bad apples instead of the brilliant martyrs who go into high finance because they didn't get the teaching position they wanted sooooo much. This book is horrific. Crown, I'm disappointed. If you're a self-righteous, arrogant moron, please buy this book. You'll love it.
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Comments (showing 1-11)

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message 11: by Sarah (new)

Sarah Ouch. Remind me not to read this book; I'd probably be tempted to throw it at something or someone.

message 10: by Philip (new)

Philip I love hating anti-teacher/ ignorant-of-what-teacher-life-is-really-like-yet-speaking-with-authority books. Although I'm sure certain Indiana State government officials will read it and eat it up. Directed at said government officials: please read the last line of this review and proceed with caution.

message 9: by Melanie (new)

Melanie Coombes I'd like to read this book. Teacher unions protect the adults, the kids are the ones who lose. We could stand to learn from Finland. They have the highest standard schools in the world. They take the top graduates and they only select a few for the teacher programs. Here anyone with mediocre grades can get into a teacher program, know someone in the school and get hired..yikes

message 8: by Philip (new)

Philip Yeah, no kidding. You have to have a master's degree to teach in Finland. I would agree to that here in the States. The only problem is, where would all these teachers come from?

message 7: by Melanie (new)

Melanie Coombes Right now I think we have way more teachers than available jobs. I get worried that teachers know that unions and tenure will let them keep a job even if they are not so great a teacher...however, I know that is not always the case. Anyway, I am sure this will always be a "hot topic."

message 6: by Philip (new)

Philip Yeah, you're probably right. We have way more teachers than available jobs. But do we have way more great teachers than available jobs? I agree that unions shouldn't protect crappy teachers, and that sometimes they do. But they also protect them from baseless allegations from students, and firings because the principal wants to hire based on nepotism. They also fight for respectable salaries - and against unfunded mandates. They're pro-public schooling because they believe all students deserve a good education.

I know of teachers unions that have protected bad teachers, and you're right - that's ridiculous. That does nothing for students, and it doesn't make the union stronger. Our association president works in our school and constantly says, "if you're not doing your job, we're not going to protect you." She's not talking about paying dues.

message 5: by Cole-SSRlist (new)

Cole-SSRlist LHS RE: Finland - that country also has a powerful teachers' union. ;)

message 4: by Melanie (new)

Melanie Coombes The reason I like Finlands program is that they are highly selective with who enters their teacher program and if you go through the program, they have a job for you. (They only take so many teachers for so many anticipated openings.)
In the US, no matter what your bachelors degree is, you can get into a teacher certification program. Then I have heard of 1000 applicants applying for one opening in an elementary school. That is really the issue I have.

Corinne So I glanced through this book when i got it from UPS. I've yet to read it, And I can tell that reading it is going to make me angry. I know plenty of teachers who put their heart & soul into teaching. Who are amazing teachers & care about their students. I know teachers who get paid hardly anything & teach in what i would consider a battle zone in OUR COUNTRY trying to get kids to engage in learning & be excited about it. This idea of attacking teachers like they don't care about our children when most of them get paid shit & have to deal with a lot of crap is hilarious. Turning them into scapegoats disgusts me. Where would all of you be if it weren't for a good teacher? I know that I wouldn't have graduated high school if it hadn't been for the two teachers I had who actually took the time to get to know me & fight hard for me against the administration who wanted to turn me into an example. Not all public schooling is bad. I went to a public school & I learned how to write an MLA sited paper. I had to write a thesis in order to graduate high school. The same could not be said however, of the rest of the schools in my county.

The problem is not Teachers, nor really is it the Teachers Union - It's parents who refuse to raise their children & then pass them on to the teachers & expect them to not only educate them, but to raise them, babysit them & guide them with some sort of morals. Then, when those children come back with morals & you all don't like what the kids have learned - you scream that they are Liberals & everything has gone to hell. Guess what - My school wasn't liberal in the slightest. My public school refused to allow me to do anything remotely liberal. I was banned from classes by history & government teachers who were right wingers. Talk about balanced. It is up to parents to raise their kids & if they are unhappy, it is up to the parents to fight to make it right. If they don't like it, then they can homeschool to their hearts content.

Clickety It's not JUST the parents; it's also a media that paints unions who fight for due process as "greedy" and politicians who pass laws that take public money away from education - did you hear about schools in TX having to charge for bus service after the legislature cut $5 billion from its education budget?

Over the past several decades, American schools have made steady gains - whether you look at test scores or services to children with special needs - and the media's misrepresentation of that is damn near criminal.

Corinne Oh, I know. I want to know how these people expect children to learn anything in a 'one size fits all' classroom. The older I get, the more I understand that education is more about producing drones than anything else. People don't all learn things in the same way - but let's all give them standardized tests to make sure they have! And then let's fire those teachers in urban environments where kids are up against a lot more (i don't need to go into that - it's a no brainer as to what those kids are up against) not to mention the teachers who have to get through to the kids... If the teacher's don't produce good worker bees that give great test scores then they have failed. Which is a joke.

Human beings aren't products. I wonder how parents can accept this kind of B.S. - How do tax payers buy into it? I don't have children so I don't get to get all up in arms about it. I live in a middle class area, but I have volunteered to teach kids in an urban environment. I shake my head at the ignorance of the majority of Americans & their selfishness.

I haven't heard about the schools in TX having to charge for bus service but it doesn't surprise me. It being Texas & all. Texas is so damn scary. Ugh, & Perry running for nomination for President is even worse, but that's also a sort of duh statement. It's def beyond disgusting. Why aren't the people who live there who are affected by this throwing fits? "Throw the bums out" as they are constantly saying.

I guess my problem is - The media really has helped to make people - children & adults alike - more selfish & vain & vapid; ignorant in general about how the world is. When I was in high school 10 years ago life just wasn't like this. I never thought I would complain or say things like this, like some sort of nostalgic old person. You can't expect kids to do well in school or America to compete with other countries educationally if politicians are constantly stripping the schools of the best educators, attacking teachers for political gains (in Michigan this is being done constantly), & using a one size fits all type of model for deciding whether or not someone is a success or a failure; whether or not a school gets funding or not. It's infuriating & is like banging one's head against a brick wall.

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