Schools can’t fix poverty, writes Alexander Russo on Scholastic. They don’t have the time or the money and it’s not their job. All the talk about “out of school” social programs is a distraction — and “part of a longer-term pushback against accountability-based reform like NCLB.”
Jumping into efforts to reach children in their home lives, however, may stretch schools’ abilities to make a real difference — and may take you and your team’s eyes off quality classroom instruction and academic improvement.
. . . Previous efforts to create large-scale social service programs for families and children have suffered from inadequate funding, low quality, and weak effects. Think Head Start or Upward Bound.
Schools need to focus their resources and energy on teaching well, Russo argues.