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John Thompson, teacher and historian, engages in debate with educator and historian Larry Cuban over the proper nomenclature for those who call themselves “reformers.” Cuban thinks it is wrong to call them “corporate reformers,” because it has negative connotations. Thompson disagrees.
How would you describe a movement that stretches from Barack Obama and Andrew Cuomo to Scott Walker and Jeb Bush? They call themselves “reformers,” but they make clear their commitment to high-stakes testing, teacher evaluations by test scores, and privatization by charters and, in the case of Republican governors like Rick Scott, John Kasich, and Mike Pence, vouchers too.
Thompson writes here:
I call them “corporate reformers” because they rely on carrots and sticks to motivate teachers and students. Educators usually seek to encourage intrinsic motivation, not extrinsic motivation.
What do you call this movement?