Dear Philly: Please read

Rick Hess’s post today on his Ed Week blog is a must read. Why? Because it’s written collaboratively by two school reformers who disagree profoundly on a range of issues. And it’s about where they find common ground.

I like and agree with some of their conclusions, especially the futility of centralized, command and control school reform. But that’s almost beside the point. What the post really shows us is what rational, level-headed, civil discussion of school reform sounds like. We’ve had very little of that in our fair city of late. Everyone’s put on their war paint: “corporate reformers” versus “greedy unions that don’t care about kids.” Everyone’s shouting, no one’s listening.

Which is a shame. I know, like and respect folks on both sides of these arguments. They both have fair and valid observations to make. They both care deeply about education and the future of young people. And as Rick’s post shows, they may have more in common than they think.