Lasting improvements in public education have been hard-won and tempered by a discovery that change in the K-12 system will never be swift, but rather incremental.
Reflecting on the two decades I’ve written about education in Washington state, I notice a sea change. Remember when students misbehaving in school were suspended or, depending on the transgression, kicked out permanently? The Washington state Legislature is among a number of states curbing the practice of school suspensions and expulsions.
Not long ago, struggling students were relegated to low-level academic tracks. The best teachers were given the gift of high-performing “deserving” kids.
Expectations of rigor were placed on the shoulders of students in gifted programs. Now, Washington state and other states require students to take an advanced course.