Why We Failed: 40 Years of Education Reform

Buy the book on Amazon.

The solutions-based book “Why We Failed: 40 Years of Education Reform” is a collection of stories, real and inspired, that paint a picture of the last 40 years of education in the United States from someone who started as a science and math teacher and worked his way up to schools superintendent, all the time pushing back against a system that undermined the potential of too many students.

The solutions-based book “Why We Failed: 40 Years of Education Reform” is available on Amazon. Click here.

Through his stories, long-time educator Lonnie Palmer asks — and answers — the questions we’ve all pondered.

  • How can we spend so much money on education and not produce better results?
  • Why are we being outperformed by 35 countries in math and 27 in science?
  • What do we have to do to turn this ship around?

In 1970, Lonnie Palmer earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics and planned to continue on to a Ph.D. program but was interrupted by a notice from the U.S. Government — a draft notice. Knowing his low number would preempt plans to continue his education, Palmer took a temporary position teaching high school science — and a reluctant education reformer was born.

Now, that reluctant reformer is having the last word on education reform in his solutions-based book: “Why We Failed: 40 Years of Education Reform” available on Amazon in paperback and for Kindle.

Lonnie at the beach resize 2
Educator/author Lonnie Palmer, who originally taught high school math and science, was the Superintendent of the City School District of Albany when New York State’s First Charter School opened.

“Why We Failed: 40 Years of Education Reform” (click here to read an excerpt) is the culmination of Palmer’s 40-plus years working in education first as a teacher teaching high school physics, AP Physics, chemistry, algebra, geometry, trigonometry and pre-calculus and later a school principal, assistant superintendent and superintendent of schools in urban, suburban and rural districts and eventually as a school district turnaround specialist in New York, North Carolina and Massachusetts.

The solutions are woven into the stories and the end of each chapter features a section called: What can we do? It’s for school superintendents, teachers, principals and school board members. The book also has mass appeal for millions of Americans who have been asking: Where has all the money gone? And how can we reform something for 40 years and make no progress?

Click here for more about the author of “Why We Failed: 40 Years of Education Reform” Lonnie Palmer.

For more information, contact Sheila Carmody of Guaranteed Press at (518) 366-6148 or sheilacarmody@guaranteedpress.net.

“Too often leadership in US education has been defined as finding the best way to get through the challenges without creating conflict, without challenging assumptions and without making employees and school board members feel bad about not doing their jobs properly or effectively.” – Lonnie Palmer


1 thought on “Why We Failed: 40 Years of Education Reform”

  1. I read the entire book during a car trip to Syracuse (13 hrs) from NC. Lonnie did a great job of highlighting the many problems that educators in NY have faced and are still present. I worked at the elementary level for 33 yrs. starting in 1970. The job has become an impossible endeavor for mastering the day to day issues that are presented. Lonnie’s book would be a great read for school administrators, school board members, teachers and involved parents. The writing process must have been great therapy just to see a lifetime of work in black and white.

    Liked by 1 person

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