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Lessons from Privilege: The American Prep School Tradition


by Caroline Hodges Persell — 1998

This is a weak and disappointing book. It promises to draw presumably generalizable lessons from the independent school tradition to address problems in public education. It focuses primarily on one educational problem, that of motivating young people to work hard, learning difficult intellectual material in the face of many cultural distractions, while it glosses over other arguably greater problems, such as school financial resources (average expenditures of $10,000 per pupil in private schools compared with $6,000 in public schools), social class (for example, how do schools deal effectively with children who lack food, immunizations, and shelter?), and true diversity (how do schools deal with the more than 81 languages that children speak?). The book is a rambling set of sometimes platitudinous observations on three major themes: community, standards, and personalization. These observations are based on field visits by Powell and others to ten schools, extensive archival work on in-house materials produced... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 100 Number 1, 1998, p. 199-203
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 10309, Date Accessed: 5/25/2017 4:13:01 PM

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