Arne Duncan, Secretary of Education – Sept 30, 2013 at National Press Club – State of Education in America
(Video in link – I transcribed a bit below, as best as I could):
“Also inhabiting this bubble are some ‘arm chair pundits’ who insist our efforts to improve public education are somehow doomed to fail, either because they believe the government isn’t capable of meaningfully improving education or because they think education reform can’t possibly work since the real problem with schools is that so many children are born poor.
“In blogs, in books, in tweets, some pundits even say our schools are performing just fine and that fundamental change isn’t needed or that we have to address poverty first before schools can improve student achievement. “
Duncan later adds:
“Too many inhabitants of this alternative universe are so supremely confident in their perspective that they have stopped listening to people with a different viewpoint. Instead of talking with each other, and more importantly, listening to each other, with respect and humility, and with a general interest in finding common ground, many of these people are just talking past each other, ignoring plain evidence and deliberately distorting the other’s positions”
“They are clearly not focusing on children and students. They are focusing, instead, on false debates.
“Fortunately, many people in the real world, outside the beltway and blogosphere, have tuned out this debate. They are too busy actually getting real work done. “
#Wow – yes, he said real work …
Not like us teachers, woops, I mean pundits.
Watch video of Duncan’s speech here: http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/DuncanonE
Armchair Pundit disclaimer – I did the best I could with the transcription. #HisWordsSpeakForThemselves