If students don’t learn from reforms, then what do they learn from?

Robert Samuelson of the Washington Post has determined that students don’t learn from school reforms.

“Few subjects inspire more intellectual dishonesty and political puffery than “school reform,’” he wrote recently.

“The larger cause of failure is almost unmentionable: shrunken student motivation. Students, after all, have to do the work. If they aren't motivated, even capable teachers may fail.”

Motivation is weak, he argues, because students don’t like school.

It's a good point. Why then is there such energy spent arguing over school reforms, when the more relevant question it seems is what the school is?

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