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Can Bill Gates and Randi Weingarten fix public education?

January 3, 2011

Bill Gates and Randi Weingarten discuss the challenges ahead for US public schools in Newsweek’s interview issue.

Both seem to think the Common Core Curriculum is a step in the right direction, and both agree that schools should do more to help teachers figure out what works and what doesn’t work in the classroom.

But as always the devil is in the details. Weingarten agrees that the current system is not working, but she blames management for failing to exit poor teachers, and favors a collaborative approach to evaluating teachers. 

Gates charges that the real obstacle to improving public schools is teacher work contracts. He calls for a more cost-conscious approach to public education that places fewer restrictions on school management and increases oversight of teachers.

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