The next time anyone is inclined to sneer at the basics as "traditional," I suggest he or she visit with a 12th -or even a sixth-grader who can barely read, write or compute and look at the pain and frustration on that student's face.
We've got a lemon factory and we're turning out 80-85 percent lemons.
It's time to admit that public education operates like a planned economy, a bureaucratic system in which everybody's role is spelled out in advance and there are few incentives for innovation and productivity. It's no surprise that our school system doesn't improve; it more resembles the communist economy than our own market economy.
To the extent that what we have is indeed a "market economy".