Diane Ravitch, "Slaying Goliath," with Carol Burris

January 21, 2020, 7:30 PM

Congregation Beth Elohim
274 Garfield Place
Brooklyn, NY 11215

Diane Ravitch joins us at Congregation Beth Elohim to present her new book, Slaying Goliath, in conversation with Carol Burris. Purchase tickets here!

Please note, this event takes place in the CBE chapel at 274 Garfield Place.

From one of the foremost authorities on education and the history of education in the United States, “whistleblower extraordinaire” (The Wall Street Journal), former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Education, author of the best-selling Reign of Error (“fearless”—Jonathan Kozol, NYRB)—an impassioned, inspiring look at the ways in which parents, teachers, activists—citizens—are successfully fighting back to defeat the forces that are privatizing America’s public schools.

In Slaying Goliath, Diane Ravitch writes of those who have privatized the schools, the Disrupters, who believe America’s schools should be run like businesses, with teachers incentivized with threats and bonuses, and schools that need to enter into the age of the gig economy in which children are treated like customers or products. She writes of the Koch brothers, the DeVos family, the Waltons (Walmart), Eli Broad, Bill Gates, Michael Bloomberg, Mark Zuckerberg, and many others, on the right and the left, as well as corporations, foundations, etc., intent on promoting the privatization of one of our most valued public institutions.

Ravitch lays out, in extensive detail, the facts showing that the ideas put forth by school privateers have failed; that their promises of higher test scores have not come to pass; that the “great hope” of Common Core has been a dud.

Arrayed against these forces, Ravitch writes of the volunteer army—“the Resisters”—that has sprung up from Seattle, Austin, and Denver, to Detroit, New Orleans, and Buffalo—parents, teachers, grandparents, students, bloggers, religious leaders, brave individuals, who, spurred on by conviction, courage, determination, and the power of ideas and passion, are fighting back to successfully keep alive their public schools.

Diane Ravitch was born in Houston, Texas, and graduated from Wellesley College and Columbia University. She is a research professor of education at New York University and the author of eleven books. Ravitch is a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and the Daniel Patrick Moynihan Award. She lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Carol Burris is the executive director of the Network for Public Education, which is dedicated to raising public awareness on issues of importance to public schools. She is a fellow of the National Education Policy Center and co-director of the Schools of Opportunity Program. Burris served as principal of South Side High School in Rockville Centre, New York, from 2000 to 2015. Burris has co-authored two books on educational equity, and her third book, “On the Same Track: How Schools Can Join the 21st Century Struggle Against Re-Segregation,” is available from Beacon Press. Burris is a frequent guest blogger for The Washington Post’s Answersheet. She received her doctorate from Teachers College in 2003.