Imagining the Future of Global Education: Dreams and Nightmares

Routledge
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Imagining the Future of Global Education examines the Grand Educational Narrative (GEN) and the major institutions that shape and disseminate it. The book focuses on national visions of education and the imaginary futures that nations seek to make reality. It critiques how the GEN policy implementation process frequently turns dreams of upward mobility into nightmares. In this way, the book takes a distinctly different approach than most comparative and international education studies. Rather than being oriented toward the past and asking how education systems around the world ended up where they are, chapters in this volume seek an understanding of how various educational visions from around the world inform the present and shape the future.

Following an introductory summary of important concepts from scholarship on "imaginary futures" and global education reform, the book is organized around three themes: "What Dreams are Made Of," illustrating, through three case studies, what the GEN looks like at the national level and how it operates across national boundaries; "A Dream within a Dream," considering some of the more novel trends in international education reform in order to provide insight into how dreams seem to function; and "Keeping Dreams from becoming Nightmares," comprising three thematic essays that describe trends in education policy in one or more countries. The book concludes with lessons for scholars and policymakers.

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About the author

Yong Zhao is a Foundation Distinguished Professor at the University of Kansas, USA, and a professorial fellow at the Mitchell Institute for Health and Education Policy, Victoria University, Australia.

Brian Gearin is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Education Methodology, Policy, and Leadership (EMPL) at the University of Oregon, USA.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Routledge
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Published on
Oct 17, 2017
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Pages
212
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ISBN
9781351610872
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Language
English
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Genres
Education / Comparative
Education / Educational Policy & Reform / General
Education / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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In this book, the authors pursue quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods approaches, conducting hundreds of large-scale surveys and in-depth interviews in 679 schools, 67 counties and 13 provinces throughout China. They also conducted longitudinal case studies in five municipalities and provinces to better reflect education reform and development in different education levels or sectors. The authors used national statistical data from the 1970s to 2013, as well as a wealth of first-hand documents and data from different levels of educational departments in schools, counties, municipals and provinces and “grass-roots” input from 253 teachers, principals, education administrators and students. The authors applied SEM, HLM, GCM, and many other statistic techniques and qualitative methods to analyse the data and materials in order to explore correlations between development and reform, internal and external factors in educational reforms, as well as strategies for resolving core issues. Their findings indicate that institutional reforms concerning financial investments, allocation of teaching resources, allocation of facilities, curricula design systems, and political, economic, social system reforms all contribute to the development of different levels and types of education in different modes and to different extents. Topics of particular interest include five case studies conducted in five different municipalities and provinces that showcase the nation’s education reform and development in a specific model and on the basis of substantial data. Further, milestone events regarding educational reform and development that have taken place in China since 2013 are examined. As a unique feature, the book also includes 353 diagrams and tables on the development and reform of education in China, offering extensive and up-to-date information on a part of the world that often remains difficult to access. The book provides an expansive and in-depth examination of the nation’s education reform and development, from its historical roots to the present, and combining official and “grass-roots” standpoints. It will help readers to understand why and how Chinese education could lead students to win in international comparisons like PISA while at the same time often being the target of scathing criticism, as well as how the nation is now working to provide a better education to serve the world’s largest population.
The relative deficiencies of U.S. public schools are a serious concern to parents and policymakers. But they should be of concern to all Americans, as a globalizing world introduces new competition for talent, markets, capital, and opportunity. In Endangering Prosperity, a trio of experts on international education policy compares the performance of American schools against that of other nations. The net result is a mixed but largely disappointing picture that clearly shows where improvement is most needed. The authors' objective is not to explain the deep causes of past failures but to document how dramatically the U.S. school system has failed its students and its citizens. It is a wake-up call for structural reform. To move forward to a different and better future requires that we understand just how serious a situation America faces today.

For example, the authors consider the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), an international mathematics examination. America is stuck in the middle of average scores, barely beating out European countries whose national economies are in the red zone. U.S. performance as measured against stronger economies is even weaker—in total, 32 nations outperformed the United States. The authors also delve into comparative reading scores. A mere 31 percent of U.S. students in the class of 2011 could perform at the "proficient" level as measured by the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) program, compared with South Korea's result of 47 percent. And while some observers may downplay the significance of cross-globe comparisons, they should note that Canadian students are dramatically outpacing their U.S. counterparts as well.

Clearly something is wrong with this picture, and this book clearly explicates the costs of inaction. The time for incremental tweaking the system is long past—wider, deeper, and more courageous steps are needed, as this book amply demonstrates with accessible prose, supported with hard data that simply cannot be ignored.

How do other countries create “smarter” kids? What is it like to be a child in the world’s new education superpowers? The Smartest Kids in the World “gets well beneath the glossy surfaces of these foreign cultures and manages to make our own culture look newly strange....The question is whether the startling perspective provided by this masterly book can also generate the will to make changes” (The New York Times Book Review).

In a handful of nations, virtually all children are learning to make complex arguments and solve problems they’ve never seen before. They are learning to think, in other words, and to thrive in the modern economy. Inspired to find answers for our own children, author and Time magazine journalist Amanda Ripley follows three Americans embed­ded in these countries for one year. Kim, fifteen, raises $10,000 so she can move from Oklahoma to Finland; Eric, eighteen, trades his high-achieving Minnesota suburb for a booming city in South Korea; and Tom, seventeen, leaves a historic Pennsylvania village for Poland.

Through these young informants, Ripley meets battle-scarred reformers, sleep-deprived zombie students, and a teacher who earns $4 million a year. Their stories, along with groundbreaking research into learning in other cultures, reveal a pattern of startling transformation: none of these countries had many “smart” kids a few decades ago. Things had changed. Teaching had become more rigorous; parents had focused on things that mattered; and children had bought into the promise of education.
The first edition of Finnish Lessons won the prestigious Grawemeyer Award in Education in 2013. It was featured inThe New York Times, The Washington Post, The New York Review of Books, The Atlantic, The Guardian, CNN, Education Week, The Huffington Post, and Dan Rather Reports and has been translated into 16 languages.

Now, with Finnish Lessons 2.0, Pasi Sahlberg has thoroughly updated his groundbreaking account of how Finland built a world-class education system during the past four decades. In this international bestseller, Sahlberg traces the evolution of Finnish education policies and highlights how they differ from the United States and much of the rest of the world. Featuring substantial additions throughout the text, Finnish Lessons 2.0 demonstrates how systematically focusing on teacher and leader professionalism, building trust between the society and its schools, and investing in educational equity rather than competition, choice, and other market-based reforms make Finnish schools an international model of success. This second edition details the complexity of meaningful change by examining Finland’s educational performance in light of the most recent international assessment data and domestic changes.

This second edition details the complexity of meaningful change by illustrating Finland’s educational performance in light of the most recent international assessment data, including PISA 2012, TIMSS 2011, PIAAC 2013, and TALIS 2013.

In the midst of continuous local reforms and global changes, Finnish Lessons 2.0 encourages educators, students, and policymakers to look beyond their own borders as they seek successful solutions for their education systems, districts, and schools.

“Reminds us that a nation can consciously build an admirable school system if it pays close attention to the needs of children; if it selects and prepares its educators well; and if it builds educational communities that are not only physically attractive but conducive to the joys of teaching and learning.”
—From the Foreword by Diane Ravitch, author of Reign of Error

“Solidifies Sahlberg’s reputation as the most thoughtful international educational researcher of our generation.”
—David Berliner, Regents' Professor Emeritus, Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College, Arizona State University

“Whether or not you have read Finnish Lessons, you should read and ponder this new edition right away.”
—Howard Gardner, author of Truth, Beauty, and Goodness Reframed

I will open my mouth with a parable;

I will utter dark sayings concerning days of old;

That which we have heard and known, and our fathers have told us,

We will not hide from their children, telling to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, and His strength, and His wondrous works that He hath done. PSALM 78:24

Midrash Sinim: Hasidic Legend and Commentary on the Torah, author Yong Zhao explores the Scripture in light of Jewish tradition, archaeology, history, linguistics, literature, sociology, mathematics, geology, and so on. He offers thoughtful and intelligent commentaries, for example,

Prior to creating the world, G-d kept the Sabbath.

Adams first prayer was for a help meet for him and the tree of life was actually an atonement tree.

By means of the flood, G-d destroyed the heaven and the earth, and re-created a new world.

Compared with Joseph, Judah was the real hero. Genesis 38 has a narrative function within the wider Joseph narrative, but far more is involved.

Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars (Prov. 9:1). The seven pillars refer to seven books (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Talmud and Zohar) and seven righteous men (Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Amram and Moses).

In Exodus event the aliens converted to Judaism on a large scale.

While many other works on the Scriptures exist solely to relay content to readers, Midrash Sinim is found provocative and intriguing, much interesting food for thought. It unveils numerical codes, deciphers long-term puzzles, solves controversial questions and provides gripping tales of Biblical figures, through which the profundity of the Torah and Jewish traditions shines with even greater brilliance.

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