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Books > Education & Teaching > Schools & Teaching > Education Theory > Administration > 0807755311
  1. Our School: Searching for Community in the Era of Choice
    Our School: Searching for Community in the Era of Choice
    Our School: Searching for Community in the Era of Choice
    Image(s) provided for illustrative purposes and may differ from the actual product
  2. Our School: Searching for Community in the Era of Choice

    Delivery: 10-20 Working Days
    Customer Ratings (14 reviews)
    Price R655.00

Additional Information

''This is an important book. Our School is vibrant and alive. Sam Chaltain's keen insights and warm, readable prose invite readers to experience the complex, challenging, often frustrating, and occasionally triumphant lives of four caring teachers and their students. I urge you to accept the invitation.''
--John Merrow, education correspondent, PBS NewsHour, and president,
Learning Matters, Inc.

''What Our School shows with passion and precision is that education is about real people leading real lives in real places. If school doesn't engage them, it doesn t work, no matter what the accountants and policymakers may say. That's what this book is really about and why it's so important for anyone who genuinely cares about schools, communities, and their children.''
--From the Foreword by Sir Ken Robinson, world-renowned author and educator

Almost every major American city is experimenting with school choice--a deeply controversial idea that is dramatically reshaping public education. Will the wider array of school options help parents and educators identify better strategies for helping all children learn? Or will the high stakes of the marketplace end up privatizing this most public of institutions? Education activist Sam Chaltain believes that before we can answer these questions, we must put a human face on the modern landscape of teaching and learning. Our School documents a year in the life of two schools in the nation's capital--one a new charter school just opening its doors, the other a neighborhood school that first opened in 1924. Chaltain weaves together the observations and emotions of the people whose lives intersect there, and the triumphs and the challenges they experience. The result is an unsettling, complex portrayal of American public education. Our School is important reading for educational policymakers, administrators, parents, the media, and anyone who aspires to be a teacher.

Book Features:

* Specific recommendations for creating a healthy, high-functioning school.
* A detailed account of what school choice actually looks and feels like to the people who experience it.
* A vivid description of the modern classroom and what it's really like to teach in public school.
* An important focus on the humanity of teachers (their personal histories, their reasons for entering the profession, their day-to-day challenges).
* An intimate look at the inner lives of children (their biggest fears and needs, their moments of triumph and understanding).

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Sam Chaltain
Teachers College Press
Teachers College Press
Teachers College Press
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Yummy! The book pulls you not just into the classrooms but into the minds and hearts of a group of teachers and administrators in two DC schools, as well as several parents finding their way in DC's school choice maze. Not a book for people who have already decided the One Right Way to teach all children, it is much more an exploration of real people doing their best in complex situations, carefully observed.

They are very sympathetic characters: young idealistic teachers coming up against a range of nitty gritty issues present both in a brand new charter school, and a 90 year old neighborhood elementary school in transition. I was rooting for all of them. They all created classrooms where children grew socially and intellectually. But several of the teachers left their positions at the end of the year, and all of the administrators were overwhelmed. I came away wishing that they all had had more support, more time to reflect.

Curiously, I also found... Read more
"Our School" is especially readable and compelling for a book about what most of us consider routine and familiar - today's schools and education. Sam Chaltain paints an insightful picture of teachers' and administrators' motivations and the rewards they receive for their efforts. He also analyzes the stumbling blocks facing them and offers some ideas for improvement.

The story covers a year in two Washington, DC schools, one a charter school. Chaltain maintains interest and even builds a modicum of suspense by creating empathy for the key players in the story and showing us their aspirations, doubts, and frustrations as they work toward outcomes. For anyone interested or involved in what's happening in schools today "Our School" is certain to engage and to provide some deeper considerations.

Jack Fretwell
Starboard Training Systems
The great value of OUR SCHOOL is reading a book by someone who knows schools and teaching from the inside-out. Sam Chaltain helps readers see the big challenges facing public elementary school teachers,leaders, parents and students by casting a light on their individual and collective struggles, dilemmas and accomplishments. The book raised up for me an essential question many in education are asking: If we are truly "Searching for Community in the Era of Choice" as his sub-title proposes, than why is it that so few professionals stay long enough today to experience what it takes over the long haul to be able to say OUR SCHOOL and know what that means?
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