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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Real Maverick Move

At tonights debate I hope that the moderator will ask the candidates their choice for Secretary of Education, and Obama will leap out of his seat and say, "I nominate William Ayers."

Like the red-meat thrown to the Republican base in the form of Sarah Palin, Ayers would energize the base. The base is primarily urban and Ayers has dedicated his second life to improving the education of urban students. Forget those country folk that vote Republican out of fear and ignorance. Leave those kids behind.

I'm joking of course. We should leave no child behind, but we also don't have to have a law telling us to care and forcing districts to strive for mediocrity. As Ayers says, "We teachers are increasingly deskilled and hammered into interchangeable cogs in a bureaucracy, pressured to reduce teaching to a set of manageable and easily superviseable tasks, and to sum it up on the basis of a single simple-minded metric, to strip it of any moral purpose or intellectual engagement or creative action whatsoever. "

We need a revolution in education. Not a violent one, but if we don't do something our system will explode like "a dream deferred." How astounding would it be if there was a secretary of education that believed in teachers instead of blamed them. A leader that took it as a given that we care about our students, that we will not leave them behind, that learning is not something to be measure with a test, that we should teach freedom of thought not minimum knowledge standards.

So in order to steal some of the McCain maverick thunder, and to bring about "change" that I can believe in, Barack Obama should formalize the tenuous relationship with William Ayers and appoint him as Secretary of Education.

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