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Labor of Learning: Market and the Next Generation of Educational Reform


reviewed by Eugene P. Trani — June 29, 2009

coverTitle: Labor of Learning: Market and the Next Generation of Educational Reform
Author(s): Alexander Sidorkin
Publisher: Sense Publishers, Rotterdam
ISBN: 9087907583, Pages: 216, Year: 2009
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In his latest book, Labor of Learning: Market and the Next Generation of Educational Reform, Alexander Sidorkin envisions a future America that knows few boundaries – where a free-market system of learning has replaced compulsory schooling and where there are 12-year-old senators and 70-year-old students (p. 197). We already live in a country with increasingly permeable boundaries – where a sizeable private education sector already competes with public schools. Nonetheless, Sidorkin’s suggested strategies for education reform, if implemented, would turn long-held mores and politically-entrenched statutes on their head. Sidorkin’s suggestions are three-fold. In the short-term, Sidorkin proposes to reform K-12 education by cultivating the communal aspects of schools (i.e., treating schools as relational economies). For the longer-term, he proposes the adoption of a quasi-market economy framework for schooling, where America’s youth – and, even, adults – would be compensated at competitive market rates to learn, and government regulation would be... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record, Date Published: June 29, 2009
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 15702, Date Accessed: 11/17/2017 11:41:11 PM

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About the Author
  • Eugene Trani
    Virginia Commonwealth University
    E-mail Author
    EUGENE P. TRANI served as the fourth president of Virginia Commonwealth University from 1990 until July 2009. VCU – now the largest university in the Commonwealth of Virginia – enrolls more than 32,000 students and employs more than 17,000 faculty and staff at VCU and the VCU Health System. The University offers more than 205 undergraduate, graduate, professional, doctoral, and post-graduate degree and certificate programs through 15 schools and one college. A specialist in U.S. foreign affairs, Dr. Trani has co-authored The First Cold War: The Legacy of Woodrow Wilson in U.S.-Soviet Relations, published in the summer of 2002 by the University of Missouri Press and in Russia by Olma-Press in Moscow. His most recent book, Distorted Mirrors: Americans and Their Relations with Russia and China in the Twentieth Century, was published in June 2009 by the University of Missouri Press and in Russia by Vagrius Publishers, and is scheduled for publication in China and Spain in 2009. Dr. Trani has most recently completed a manuscript about universities and economic development entitled The Indispensable University: How Higher Education can Promote Economic and Community Development in the Knowledge Economy, which will be published in ACE’s Higher Education Series by Rowman and Littlefield. He currently serves as President Emeritus and Distinguished University Professor at VCU and focuses his time on research, writing, and teaching in the Honors College of the University.
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