“Why We Failed: 40 Years of Education Reform”

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Lonnie Palmer spent 40-plus years as an educator that included teaching science and math and serving as the superintendent of urban, suburban and rural schools.

by Lonnie Palmer

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” for release in 2016.

Click here for an excerpt.

In 1970, within a year of the temporary teaching gig, Palmer was drafted into the U.S. Army and spent two years from 1971-73 in the health, physics and safety office at the Edgewood Arsenal in Maryland.

But the time Palmer spent teaching – the students he met – prompted him to, upon discharge, go back in to the classroom.

“Why We Failed: 40 Years of Education Reform” 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 as an 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 Hawaii.

“Why We Failed: 40 Years of Education Reform” is a blend of nonfiction stories as well as fictionalized composites woven together to paint a picture of the past four decades of education in the United States from the point of view of a scientist turned educator turned author.

The book has eight chapters and is 350 pages long. Some of the chapter titles include: Common Core is Not the Problem; Politicians Need Not Apply; Special Education: All Heart and No Head and Creating Quality with Tenure.

The solutions are not only woven into the stories but the end of each chapter features a section called: What can we do? There is a how-to list for: school superintendents, teachers, principals and school board members. The target audience is educators and teacher, principal and superintendent training programs in higher education. It 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?

“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

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.

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