Former Intel Corp. CEO Craig Barrett
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Finally. A business person that has fresh ideas to remodel our education system. Instead of the tired old cry of the poor teachers don't get paid enough - which is hogwash given the lifelong pensions and healthcare benefits - education be held accountable for performance. A great idea that I support!
Business people don't know how to remodel education systems. We are not turning out widgets here for profit, but people. I don't know where you get your information, but the hogwash part you should know a lot about. You are spewing enough in your comment. But I'm sure you are one of the one percent, right?
There is nothing new in any of his statements. Any changes must not harm or interfere with those students who are doing well. Charter schools and business practices are not the answer. Greater parental involvement and more science classes at the elementary level are partly what is needed. And yes even more p.e. since many kids like their parents are too fat.
Craig Barrett's proven accomplishments suggest he is the right person for the job and he is capable to positively change the quality of education in Arizona. He is the president of BASIS schools. See how the BASIS schools have been rated in the nation. NEWSWEEKAMERICA'S BEST HIGH SCHOOLS2011 3rd in the Nation BASIS Tucson2010 6th in the Nation BASIS Tucson2009 5th in the Nation BASIS Tucson2008 1st in the Nation BASIS Tucson2007 6th in the Nation BASIS Tucson2006 3rd in the Nation BASIS Tucson
WASHINGTON POSTRANKING AMERICA'S HIGH SCHOOLS2011 4th in the Nation BASIS Tucson
U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORTBEST HIGH SCHOOLS FOR MATH AND SCIENCE 2011 2nd in the Nation BASIS Tucson
U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT*BEST HIGH SCHOOLS2010 9th in the Nation BASIS Tucson2009 13th in the Nation BASIS Tucson2008 16th in the Nation BASIS Tucson
BUSINESSWEEKAMERICA'S BEST HIGH SCHOOLS2009 Top Arizona School for Overall Academic Performance BASIS Scottsdale
BUSINESSWEEKAMERICA'S BEST HIGH SCHOOLS2009 Top Arizona School for Overall Academic Performance BASIS Scottsdale
Craig Barrett has been working with one of the top charter school chains in the nation for many years. The honors college at ASU is named after him (he has also served on many boards at the college since before 2000), and he has three degrees from Stanford. He understands the good educational aspects not only of the United States but other countries as well. Morrill should let down his guard and listen to what Mr. Barrett suggests and, hopefully, companies will be drawn to Arizona not only for their beautiful weather, but also for their highly educated students. Bravo, Governor Brewer!!
The BASIS schools are terrific, no doubt about that.
But one question: What are the class sizes at the schools?
I ask because when I look at their report card on the the Dept. of Ed. website, I notice they seem to have small numbers of kids at every grade.
BASIS in Scottsdale, for example, has 43 teachers for about 500 kids -- that's a teacher/student ratio of 1:11.
Is there any traditional school in the state with that teacher/student ratio? Of course not.
So if Mr. Barrett thinks the BASIS schools are a model of what Arizona should do, and he thinks we can do it with no additional funds, he's fooling himself.
[innocent] Basis goes out and markets extremely high standards and curriculum which is great. They then get very involved parents to bring their very smart kids over. When even those kids with those parents don't make the grade, they are weeded out. It isn't very difficult to take that clientel and be a "model" of learning. How will a public school that accepts everyone and their sister follow that model?
Having someone who has been involved in business and education, who wants to offer his ideas to the Governor is positive. If he suggests class ratios like Basis, he must offer ideas to pay for that. Anyone can throw money at a situation, but it must mean something more than higher wages, it must mean great results. Lets listen to him, and cut him to ribbons later!
Since the writer of this article has only printed the highlights of Mr. Barrett's ideas, it is up to the people to seek out the rest of the information in order to pass judgement accordingly. A previous post wants to know how a BASIC school program will work for our public schools that accept all children into the education system and how will the class sizes get smaller. Well, that is actually the easy part. Parents due get involved when they don't have any other choices. Engaging Charter Schools vs Don't Care Public schools. . .hmmm that's an efforless choice and it's indicative of why our public schools fail. Currently, AZ has several schools that have closed or are closing because of "low enrollment". These schools should not have been closed, but instead turned into magnet schools by working with the smaller class sizes. When smaller classes exist, children learn better and parents do get involve. So it didn't matter what neighborhood those decreasing schools became, they were offered an ideal situation to turn the rest of the children into top learners and for the school to turn itself around. But alas, it was easier for the school district to close the schools, release the staff and put more money into their own pockets. Now that's big business working at its best.
So for those who are afraid of a "business man" coming in to revamp our education system thinking education doesn't work like a business, think again. It does and it needs to be overhauled, like any business getting ready to close their doors for good. If AZ keeps going in this downward spiral, this state will produce more illiterate and non-thinkers than any other place in the country. Forget about quality jobs, these kids will only be educated enough for picking produce. Listen to them now, they barely have a basic grasp of the English language. Poor grammar, poor social skills, poor life choices, poor future. Is this what you want AZ's future to be? The rest of the country already views us as the wild west, podunk hole in the country. Why, oh why do we keep giving them more ammunition?
Goodluck Mr. Barrett. You have an impossible task ahead of you. There are so many problems, so many culprits, so many special interests, so little imagination. But all of the hard work, the lofty ideals, the good intentions will be for naught until someone smacks the parents and kids in head, tells them to wake up and start doing something. There are so many kids in schools who are lazy, disruptive, disrespectful and who want everything to be fun and easy. Their parents don't motivate them or encourage them. There are too many princpals whose only goal is to graduate, not educate, students. And in AZ, school sports trumps everything else. The sad truth is that in Arizona education isn't important to many of the population.
Mr. Barret has some good ideas on how to turn children into profitable Corporate Resources.
Interesting. What Barrett is suggesting, regarding core national standards, is already happening--it started in Kindergartens this year for Mesa schools. And with the implementation of those national standards, the last three bulleted items from the article are expected outcomes. In fact, if by 3rd grade students are not reading at grade level, they will not be promoted to the next grade.
As someone who has an interest in education (being a president and chairman for a charter school), he would certainly know that. Nice job, Barrett, touting an already implemented program as your own. Got anything else?
Expel disruptive, drug-dealing, hazing, chronically truant students.Put "English as a Second Language" students in classes by themselves until they are able to keep up with the other students.Science and Math teachers pay should at least be on a par with...football, basketball, baseball coaches. Mandatory "second" language requirement for graduation.Complete end to "Social Advancement" (if you flunk a number of classes you either go to Summer School and retake the class and pass it or stay in the same grade until they do). Cinco de Mayo should not be celebrated as if it was an American Holiday.
And lastly, there should be clearly defined "clothing standards" as to what is and what is not "allowed". Students should not be restricted from seeing the blackboard because of a "helmet of spiked hair" or a "20" blown-out Afro" or a "foot-high Mohawk".
I am a fan of Charter Schools in general - however The BASIS model simply weeds out any student who is not already academically achieving (AND whose parents are actively involved). It is a "public" school only in name and has absolutely ZERO chance for implementation on a broad scale in a system that MUST accept EVERY student. My friends 3rd grade BASIS student was just required to buy a $150 copy of windows office so they could do a power point presentation. Try enforcing that in a Phoenix metro elementary school.
The question is how does this gentleman propose to achieve the same results as BASIS when he is no longer allowed to cherry pick his student population? Shame on the reporter for not asking that question.
What I see is that BASIS Scottsdale has just under 700 students and around 40 teachers. The lower grades have 25-30 students in each class but 10-12th have smaller classes but as the school continues to grow, these classes will, too. Some of the kids are very smart but there are more "average" kids with a desire to learn. The people who run the school know that sometimes it takes until 8th grade for some kids to get organized and they are willing to work with any kids who desire to stay. I am sure that a good education is talked about in the home, which starts the desire in the children. I know parents with children at BASIS from all walks of life with the same intention - a good education without drug and bully issues. About the 3rd grade BASIS student, BASIS does not start until 5th grade and any presentation that I know of could be done on an overhead if the child didn't have access to a computer program. If a child could not afford the clear overhead papers, the school would give them to the child. BASIS will hold and have held children back if they do not pass their classes, and most of the children stay at the school because they know they are getting a great education.
I agree with a lot of what has been said...educating students can't be like, how Jamie Vollmer puts it, having a blueberry factory and throwing out any blueberries that come from the fields that are moldy, dusty, or just "not good" in some form or another. My concern with this guy is he is, first and foremost, a businessman, particularly one who "picks and chooses his blueberries" (students) that he gets to use and work with. I don't get to do that in my classroom, yet I'm still able to find success with the majority of my students. We need to follow teachers like that who make a difference no matter the circumstances of the students in their classrooms.
In order for education reform to succeed, you need to have committee members who are in the trenches (mainly teachers from different disciplines, as well as some administrators and some businessmen who can keep the focus on why we are educating children). I'm hoping the rest of the committee members are a diverse group who can bring all of these different perspectives to the table for comprehensive reform.
Leon, I do agree with some of what you say, it is hard with current laws in place to do some of those things, but our lawmakers can always change the laws if they need to as well. The problem with today's students is they expect everything to be given them (instant gratification), and that comes from their parents (I'm speaking generally not individually) having the same expectations to have instant results. Education is not like a business, we are dealing with people from all walks of life and trying to help them all to be successful, but real and effective change comes over time, through days, months, and sometimes (or actually often) years of hard work with these students. We don't always have 100% success, but 100% success is always our goal. We don't ask for more money in education because we want to inflate our wallets, we ask for more money so we can have more aides and more individualized help for students who need it, and heaven knows we have tons more students in need now if you just take a look at all the broken homes. Studies have proven that homes with a mother and father at the helm have better well-adjusted children than from other homes. Not to say that divorce, etc. is always preventable, but again the instant gratification of society has caused more families than ever to be broken up. This causes unique challenges to help these children to succeed in life, and often requires more money to get the help they need. Would I want more pay than I have now? Yes, I'll be honest about that, but I'd rather have the extra money go towards helping these children overcome the extreme difficulties they have starting out in life. If we can fix the education system to do that, then not only will they become hard-working, well-adjusted tax-paying and contributing adults, we will also start attracting quality businesses to Arizona and our economy will improve again.
azguy: I am at odds with you on charter schools. I think that charter schools need accountability. I am seeing more and more Taj Maha's being built with taxpayer money. I personally feel that their books ought to be open for review. I can't understand why they are allowed to hire non certified teachers and charter schools are exempt. This is akin to public schools fighting the school yard bully with one hand tied behind their back. Secondly, all of those supposedly non taxable tuition organizations definitely need to have their their books open and periodically audited. The one run by Steve Yarbrough is a shining example.
Point of clarification - I was wrong when I referred to my friends 3rd grade child - they are 5th graders (time sure flys). I hope it does not distract from my larger point which is that BASIS caters to a small segment of the student population. In doing so it ignores most of the actual problems plaguing the public school system as a whole.
If you had a team of nothing but Navy Seals - you would expect above average results - would you not? But the question still remains - What about kids with single parents, poor families, kids whose parents are just not involved, language problems, etc.?
Mr. Barrett has done a nice job addressing the need of parents who do not want their children being held back by the myriad of distractions that populate the average classroom (and as a parent I mean that sincerely). But what he has not addressed is what he is going to do when he must address the needs of everyone else. I wish the author of this article had bothered to ask this question.
Here is an interesting read about a school board member who took the 10th grade math and reading standardized tests, a man who has a bachelors, two masters and a PhD and is a very successful person in the business world. This article should give good perspective on some shifts in focus that need to take place in education. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/post/when-an-adult-took-standardized-tests-forced-on-kids/2011/12/05/gIQApTDuUO_blog.html
Craig Barrett??? The man at Intel who claimed he wanted teamwork in the workplace at the same time as he establishes a ranking and rating performance/compensation system that pits an employee against other employees and then is surprised when employees won't share information for fear the other employees will rank above them resulting in dysfunctional teams? Hmmmmm. I'm not sure that this is the person to analyze "cause and effect" on any topic.
Craig Barrett has the same agenda he had when he was leading Intel--he needs to increase the supply of engineers so that Intel and other tech companies will have to pay less to get them. He does understand supply and demand but knows little about how students learn and what each individual student needs to reach his or her potential. If Barrett had all the answers he would have more "believers" by now.
Typical thinking from a short sighted Republican. Pointing to the success of Basis is bogus. Even the worst school would produce excellent results by cherry picking only the best students and expelling or refusing to allow admission to the rest. The fact is that money in the classroom, money to hire more teachers, reducing student to teacher ratios, providing more safe after school activities, must I go on?
You cannot improve education unless you are willing to pay for it. education in Arizona stinks because Arizonans don't want to pay for the services they demand.
Some people love him.........Some people hate him......how about giving the guy a chance!
Wow. Everyone has an opinion on this topic. Our education system is in such shambles, I don't see how he can do any worse, frankly. A business guy in the education system? Severely needed. He will be working against the system, but more power to him!
Our schools have gotten too soft over the years. Discipline is a HUGE problem. Those that distract, threaten, and are out of control of themselves (behavior problems), never seem to leave the classroom. No matter what they do, they are welcomed back. It makes teaching harder than it has to be. It lowers the quality of the lessons taught.
No PE, no art, no language is taught (usually) until junior high. That is a big problem. Kids learn languages easily when young. Too many parents look at school as day care, and education is not a priority.
When you mix that with administration that is more concerned with playing political games then making learning a priority, there is a monkeywrench. Untraditional lessons can be fun, exciting and memorable. When teachers are told that students must stay in their seats, raise their hand, and not talk out of turn...nice idea. Order does need to be a priority, but serving education on white bread is boring and ineffective.
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