Like Everything Else, School Reform is All About the Benjamins Too

Or in other words, how the private sector is gutting educating to profit from your tax dollars.

My wife has worked at a few charter schools now, and they were all — without exception — purely profit driven, unconcerned with students or with learning, guilty of pressuring faculty to push students through regardless of whether or not they had learned, and in some cases virtually abusive in their treatment of faculty.

Profit and education don’t belong together. There’s no such thing as a good for-profit school once you go beyond trade and vocational schools. At best, they rise to an acceptable level of mediocrity — with the highest level of student loan debt.


Punkonomics (@DearBalak)


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Just who does the New York Times turn to for higher ed expertise? (essay) | Inside Higher Ed

Great article: Jonathan Senchyne calls out Nicolas Kristof for his misguided editorial on the lack of “public intellectuals.” Who really gets space in The New York Times? So-called “innovative educators” buying space to promote for-profit ventures, none of whom are actually educators or innovators — just profiteers.

I would add that there are few or no true public intellectuals actively writing in venues such as the NYTSalon, or Slate because educated opinion making fine distinctions in measured tones isn’t very good click bait. Careful reasoning sounds like hair splitting to most people when, in fact, it is really just careful reasoning taking into account as many of the facts as possible. What media outlets want are flame wars that generate hits, or inflammatory posts that provide confirmation bias for a large and clearly identifiable demographic, but not the work of public intellectuals.

Kristof’s essay obscures this truth while benefitting from it. See? I’m talking about it here…more exposure for him.

Just who does the New York Times turn to for higher ed expertise? (essay) | Inside Higher Ed.

Assignment: Research Your Adjunct Teachers – The Conversation – Blogs – The Chronicle of Higher Education

The story told by this former adjunct instructor isn’t exceptional: it’s the norm, and explains very clearly why students are being ripped off by college and university programs that rely primarily on adjunct instructors.

Assignment: Research Your Adjunct Teachers – The Conversation – Blogs – The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Enrollment Plummeting at These Law Schools

What you need to know about law school:

  • Just over 50% of new lawyers get a job in law, but they usually graduate with high debt.
  • According to the ABA, there are about 4900 new lawyers competing for about 1800 jobs. Here’s a good graphic spelling out the situation.
  • The top ten law schools for job placement are big state universities or Ivy League schools.
  • The school with one of the highest employment rates is the University of Virginia.
  • And here’s your best information, perhaps: lowest and highest underemployment rates for law school grads at these schools. Notice that the overall rankings do not at all correspond to the most employable graduates once you get past the very top schools. I would only consider a school in the top 25 or so for employability if I were going to start law school today.

Finding My College

I’ve written about the hard times law schools are going through. Applications are dropping like a rock and for good reason: law schools are overpriced and job prospects for newly minted lawyers are bleak.

Here are 18 law schools that have experienced enrollment declines of more than 30% since 2010 (the list was compiled by The National Jurist):

University of La Verne -66.2%
Cooley Law School -40.6% (saw the biggest drop in raw numbers)
Catholic University -39.5%
New York Law School -38.7%
University of Dayton -38.5%
Pacific McGeorge -38.4%
Widener U. – Harrisburg -36.9%
U. of New Hampshire -34.8%
Seton Hall University -34.7%
Liberty University -33.9%
Western New England -33.3%
Case Western -32.7%
Hamline University -32.7%
Ave Maria School of Law -31.8%
Appalachian School of Law -31.0%
Widener University – Delaware -30.5%
Vermont Law School -30.5%
Saint Louis University -30.2%

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14 Ways an Economist Says I Love You

The more I read geek romance tweets and sites, the more I appreciate geeks:

14 Ways an Economist Says I Love You.

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