Why The Virus Won


So much has been said and written about the pandemic over past eight months that you’re probably sick of the news. However, ignore that feeling and read “How the Pandemic Defeated America” from the September issue of The Atlantic.1

The piece does an excellent job of explaining in detail not only how US leadership “careened between inaction and ineptitude” in their response to the crisis, but also lays out how our fragile, expensive, and inequitable health care system made the failures of 2020 all but inevitable.

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Ask The Experts

In a recent article, The Atlantic asks Can Schools Be Fixed?. To answer that very broad, completely open ended, and very non-specific question, they went to the “experts”.

Experts like a professor of economics at MIT, the lead education blogger for NPR, a Washington Post reporter, a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, an “Emerson senior fellow” (who also writes for the Atlantic), the founder and chairman of IDEO (a design firm), and the presidents of the NEA and AFT. Plus Diane Ravitch, Linda Darling-Hammond, and the CEO of DonorsChoose, all of whom might actually have some expertise to bring to this discussion.

However, completely missing from this particular panel of “experts”, as always, is anyone currently working with K12 students at any level. Not a teacher, no school administrators. Instead we have college professors, leaders of advocacy groups, professional writers, and news reporters. People who may be parents but still only have an outside-looking-in-the-classroom-window view of the education process.

And, of course, the Atlantic editors included no kids. Because we certainly can’t ask any actual students what’s wrong (or right) with their education and what could be done to “fix” their school.