Summary of “Why I Lied to Everyone in High School About Knowing Karate”

In 10th grade, I was chosen to be photographed for a yearbook feature called “Out of the Ordinary Hobbies.” The yearbook staff heard I had a green belt in karate and wanted to do an interview with photos.
Why didn’t the school offer karate instead of stupid stuff like home economics? She’d rather know how to protect herself than sew a button.
Maybe he’d see my profile next to his and seek me out after school.
What would my father say? He was already unhappy with my struggles in school, unhappy with how I was turning out.
A few nights before I had plagiarized the short story, my father sat with me at the kitchen table, going over the geometry test my teacher had sent directly to my parents with a note.
It was like every girl in high school knew which nights to congregate at the mall except me.
The yearbook feature could say what I couldn’t to my friends and peers and teachers over the span of ten years roaming the school hallways alone: look at me.
I must have told someone I knew karate forI don’t even know what reason, but I never thought it would get around the school this way.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why Asian-Americans Feel Powerless in the Battle over New York’s Élite High Schools”

The Asian preoccupation with education has also become a pivotal point of reckoning in a recent proposal, introduced by Bill de Blasio, the Mayor of New York City, to overhaul admission to eight of the city’s nine premier specialized high schools, the best known of which-Stuyvesant and Bronx Science-represent the highest levels of academic achievement in the country’s public-education system.
In New York City and across the country, the demand for schools far outstrips their supply.
Many educators have recently made the point that specialized high schools account for only about six per cent of seats in the city’s public high schools, so reforming these schools hardly comes close to solving the problem.
For Ng, the lack of pipeline middle schools is crucial, too: currently, twenty-one middle schools graduate more than half the students accepted at the specialized high schools, and none of them are in black and Latino communities.
“If the city doesn’t help create more middle schools with gifted-and-talented programs that adequately prepare students for schools like Stuy, how can the students feel ready?”.
The late Jean Anyon, a professor of education policy at the City University of New York and the author of “Ghetto Schooling,” used a similarly potent metaphor to describe the problem: “Attempting to fix inner-city schools without fixing the city in which they are embedded is like trying to clean the air on one side of a screen door.” It occurred to me that the most accurate portrait of the system might be a composite of the two images: public schools are akin to fragile growths that cannot be judged or transformed independent of the environments-in this case, a complex interplay of economics, politics, and history-from which they spring.
Richard Carranza, the city’s new schools chancellor, while engaging in a spirited defense of the Mayor’s initiative on the local Fox News affiliate, said that he doesn’t “Buy into the narrative that any one ethnic group owns admission to these schools.” That characterization baffled me, because what has traditionally fuelled the community’s striving is a profound sense of powerlessness.
Syed Ali and Margaret Chin, two New York professors of sociology, write in The Atlantic that another crucial decision was one made in the nineteen-nineties, which largely ended tracking and honors programs within the city’s public schools; after that, the numbers of black and Latino students admitted to the specialized schools dropped.

The orginal article.

Summary of “First space, then auto-now Elon Musk quietly tinkers with education”

For the past four years, this experimental non-profit school has been quietly educating Musk’s sons, the children of select SpaceX employees, and a few high-achievers from nearby Los Angeles.
It started back in 2014, when Musk pulled his five young sons out of one of Los Angeles’ most prestigious private schools for gifted children.
Ad Astra’s principal hopes that the school will revolutionize education in the same way Tesla has disrupted transportation, and SpaceX the rocket industry.
Will Musk maintain interest in the school once his children move on? And even if he does, can a school of fewer than 40 students ever be anything more than a high-tech crèche for already-privileged children?
“There are people who could afford any of the private schools in LA but want that school in particular,” she says.
“That’s the level of interest in this school. I cannot imagine that happening with any other school, public or private.”
It is not unusual for parents to have a grassroots effort to build their own school, according to Nancy Herzog, an educational psychology professor at University of Washington and an expert in gifted education.
These, like everything else at school including tuition, are paid for by Elon Musk.

The orginal article.

Summary of “When Did the U.S. Stop Seeing Teachers as Professionals?”

The teachers’ position is that, under the cover of a commitment to improving schools, school district and local governments have instead closed neighborhood public schools, opened charter schools, instituted standard curriculums, mandated poorly thought out high-stakes standardized testing, attacked teacher tenure, instituted merit pay instead of annual salary increments, restricted collective bargaining rights, and subjected teachers to questionable and punitive evaluation schemes.
In other words, and as others have noted, teachers are balking at the erosion of their status as professionals.
The survey reported that 99% of teachers “Strongly agreed or agreed” with the statement that “Teaching is more than academics; it is also about reinforcing good citizenship, resilience and social skills.”
Teaching, like pastoring, is often a “Calling.” So it stands to reason that teachers themselves are the appropriate people to define the best “Educational practices, entrance routes, credentialing requirements, continuing training options, codes of conduct, and methods of enforcement.”
As University of British Columbia professor Wendy Poole noted, “Teachers’ work, once conceived as requiring high discretion and autonomy, is increasingly reduced to technical-rational conceptions of teaching and teachers are increasingly viewed as technicians.” Creativity is squeezed out for conformity and teacher autonomy suppressed; room for going “Rogue” is the exception.
In one study, 93% of teachers reported high stress levels, while only 7% self identified as “Well-adjusted.” A survey by the American Federation of Teachers and the Badass Teachers Association reported that educators find work to be stressful 61% of the time and nearly a quarter of respondents said work was “Always” stressful.
Why? In our book on the 2012 Chicago teacher strike, my colleague and I note, “Teacher unions have largely made compromises with the prevailing wisdom. They haven’t done so without expressed reservation or opposition, but in the face of an irrational and bipartisan demonization of schoolteachers and their unions, some believed tactical retreat seemed prudent.” And surveys of teachers suggest that many are interested in new school concepts that invite entrepreneurial thinking and experimentation.
A contextualized professionalism would have teachers teach children, not a curriculum.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Company Making Billions Off China’s Worried Parents”

Steven, a serious-looking 9-year-old public school student in Beijing, spent a recent Friday evening in a classroom at a tutoring center operated by TAL Education Group, cramming mathematics drills.
TAL’s initials stand for Tomorrow Advancing Life, a none-too-subtle nod to one of the biggest anxieties of middle-class families in the test-based world of Chinese education.
No one had profited from the stock’s rise more than Zhang Bangxin, TAL’s co-founder, a 37-year-old former math tutor who’s become one of China’s richest people: His TAL shares are worth about $7 billion.
TAL’s tutoring encourages students to practice the kinds of questions they’ll face on China’s exams.
The measures aimed to eliminate one of TAL’s profit centers: training for the Mathematical Olympiad, an intense competition for students up to age 20.
They were so central to TAL’s success that the company promoted them in its IPO prospectus.
At the time of the antitutoring edict, Nicky Ge, an analyst with China Renaissance Group, said the initiative could lower demand for TAL’s services, especially in math, which made up more than 60 percent of the company’s revenue last year.
Investors may be agreeing with Zhang, who says the government intervention could help TAL as tighter regulation drives smaller companies out of the market.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why Dutch teenagers are among the happiest in the world”

The last HBSC report, comparing children of 11, 13 and 15, showed a happy Dutch youth.
The results chime with a 2016 Dutch Statistics Office study of 4,000 people from 12 to 25, who ranked their happiness at 8.4 out of 10, and a PISA report in 2015 noting that the country – alongside Finland and Switzerland – seemed “Able to combine good learning outcomes with highly satisfied students”.
Like most Dutch teenagers, he cycles to school and feels he has a good level of self-determination.
Despite the country’s reputation for cannabis smoking, the Trimbos Institute reports a downward trend for using alcohol and drugs and smoking in Dutch children aged 12 to 16.
The HBSC data supports this: 86% of Dutch teenagers say their classmates are kind and helpful, putting the country top of the tables at 13 and 15.
Meanwhile a poster on her school’s wall encouraging people of all sexualities to “Come out” reaffirms that openness is OK. The rate of teenage pregnancies in the Netherlands is also the lowest in the EU. The Dutch school system – almost entirely public -incorporates major exams at about the age of 12 and three levels of secondary education from practical to the most academic.
There are social problems such as differences between minority ethnic and native Dutch achievement, while one in nine children grows up in poverty.
Who developed happiness classes at the school a decade ago, and also gives positive psychology lessons to educators, is worried that Dutch children are under threat from new pressures around educational achievement.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How To Dial Back Stress For High-Achieving Kids”

How To Dial Back Stress For High-Achieving Kids : Shots – Health News Part of a parent’s job is to help kids do their best, but pushing too hard can backfire.
Research shows kids in high-achieving communities are at higher risk of anxiety, depression and substance use.
From an early age, Savannah says, she was considered one of the smart kids, and when she arrived at Wilton High School, she was surrounded by many other high achievers.
Like many kids at her school – and at elite high schools across the country – she felt compelled to push herself to get good grades and get into a top college.
Unlike supervised activities, Skenazy says, free play teaches kids how to negotiate, compromise, make friends and communicate.
She has published several studies that document the elevated rates of drug and alcohol use by kids who grow up in privileged communities – where incomes and expectations are high.
“What we’ve found is that kids in high-achieving, relatively affluent communities are reporting higher levels of substance use than inner-city kids and levels of anxiety and depressive symptoms are also commensurate – if not greater,” Luthar says.
Her most recent study, funded by the National Institutes of Health, found that rates of substance abuse remain high among upper-middle-class kids, as they enter early adulthood.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Inside the Travis Hill High School at the New Orleans Jail”

The New Orleans jail has offered something unusual: a full-day high school that’s part of the public school system and offers real credits.
There are between a dozen and 50 juveniles at the jail at any given time – and they needed a school.
The Orleans Parish School Board signed a contract last year with the national nonprofit Center for Educational Excellence in Alternative Settings to start the Travis Hill School, named after a local trumpeter who was incarcerated as a teenager.
Since the school’s opening, three have earned a diploma; another 13 passed state exams in English, and 14 passed in math – all of it a first for anyone at the New Orleans jail.
To ease the students’ confusion, Travis Hill created a staff position that no other school would have: a “Transition” director.
In March, just a few weeks after Juron’s arrival, the Travis Hill School got the worst kind of news.
The news landed hard, piercing the illusion that school was just school and that jail and court were somehow ignorable.
The school’s first-ever graduate, Tristion, who received a degree in April, succeeded in school by trying to ignore the part where he was in jail.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How Steph Curry and Klay Thompson overcame their childhood nemeses”

While he might well be one of the most feared weapons in the NBA today, when Steph Curry was 12 years old, a kid named CJ Young owned him.
While the barrel-chested Young looked older than his peers, the wispy Curry was often mistaken for a younger player.
During one of their games, Carl Young remembers, Curry drilled seven 3-pointers in a row over an increasingly agitated defender.
As Curry grew older – and taller – he enrolled at a private school, Charlotte Christian, and no longer crossed paths with Young.
The last time Young saw Steph Curry was in 2005, when they ran into each other at the Indian Trail Rec Center on the outskirts of Charlotte, working independently on their games and preparing for the next step in their basketball journey.
CJ Young, Curry is informed, has a debilitating illness.
“Recently, while watching Curry drain one of those absurdly long 3s, Young turned to the friends who were watching with him and informed them proudly,”I know him.
He quickly thumbed through, then triumphantly pointed to a faded AAU photo from 18 years ago, when Steph Curry was just a skinny little zone-buster and CJ Young was on top of the basketball world.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The making of Doris Burke”

For her fourth-grade ritual, Burke would put on the purple jacket.
Burke dismissed the urban legend-like work ethic extolled by those who know her as nothing more than a love of sports.
Burke gave no credence to the thought that it was uncool to be a girl athlete as she grew up.
The flat-footed, set-shooting players of the ’80s looked like they were always chasing Burke.
“For me to even think about attending a college or university would have been a real financial hardship. It would not have happened,” Burke said.
Burke became an All-Big East player, and upon graduation, head coach Bob Foley knew his point guard could be a valuable asset on his staff.
After two years of analyzing and learning the game from the sidelines, Burke left the coaching staff to start her family after she married Gregg Burke, an employee in the athletic department, in 1989.
To stay involved with her obsession, Burke announced Providence women’s games on the radio to an audience of practically zero.

The orginal article.