Posts Tagged ‘interviews’
“How Children Succeed” comes out today! Please stop by your local independent bookstore or online bookseller and pick up a copy. As well, please check out the interview I did this morning on NPR’s “Morning Edition.”
Finally: If you’re in New York City, please come to the bookstore event I’m doing with Ira Glass of “This American Life” tonight at 7 pm at the Barnes & Noble at 82nd and Broadway. See you there!
In today’s Globe and Mail, there’s an article on the front page of the Focus section by Margaret Wente about my new book, “How Children Succeed,” including a long Q&A between me and Ms. Wente.
I was interviewed recently by Aleksandra Kaniewska, a Polish journalist working for Civic Institute, a think tank in Warsaw, which just published the interview as a Q&A in their web magazine, translated into Polish. Unfortunately, I don’t understand Polish, so I can’t read it, but apparently I said:
Nie chodzi więc o to, żeby dzieci jednego dnia pasjonowały się polityką, a drugiego jazdą na snowboardzie, tylko uparcie dążyły do wybranego przez siebie celu, jakikolwiek on będzie. Niestety, większość szkół nie sprawdza i nie wytwarza umiejętności samokontroli i wytrwałości. A są one niezbędne do szczęśliwego i spełnionego życia!
which according to Google Translate, means:
It is not, therefore, is that one day children are passionate about politics, and a second ride on a snowboard, but stubbornly sought to order their choice, whatever it is. Unfortunately, most schools do not verify and does not produce self-control skills and perseverance. And they are essential to a happy and fulfilled life!
That sounds like me.
Last week I had a story in the New Yorker about Nadine Burke, a pediatrician in San Francisco, and the work she is doing to develop a clinical treatment protocol from the emerging research about childhood trauma and its longterm effects. My reporting about Dr. Burke will become part of my new book, “The Success Equation,” which Houghton Mifflin Harcourt will publish next year.
The New Yorker story got me booked on “RadioWest,” an hourlong public-affairs show on KUER in Salt Lake City. The host, Doug Fabrizio, asked some great questions, as did the many callers, from Utah and around the country (the show is also broadcast nationwide on Sirius XM). There’s now audio of the whole hour available here.
The article also played a part in this fascinating blog post from Whet Moser, on Chicagomag.com, which manages to tie together my reporting on Dr. Burke with Alex Kotlowitz’s great reporting in the New York Times Magazine on the Ceasefire initiative in Chicago, as well as a handful of other news reports and scientific studies. It’s well worth reading to get some broader context on the question of childhood trauma.
Yesterday on Early Ed Watch, a blog about early education from the New American Foundation, Lisa Guernsey, the director of the foundation’s early education initiative, published a Q&A that she did with me on early education, my new book, the Harlem Children’s Zone, and “Waiting for ‘Superman,'” among other topics. An excerpt:
I’m working on a new book that has me back out visiting a lot of schools, and I’m interested in the so-called non-cognitive aspects of persistent poverty and educational opportunities that help people escape from poverty. I’m looking at how – both at the preschool level and also the high school level – interventions may focus on aspects of character or personality or executive function. For me personally that’s the most interesting thing going on out there. It’s really early and less connected and less well-formed as an argument than what I was writing about in Whatever it Takes, but it contains the germ of having new ways of thinking about poverty and what is going on in the lives of poor kids and what kinds of interventions might get them out of poverty.
In an interview with Ezra Klein on the Washington Post’s website, the economist James Heckman (who I wrote about in my book and in the New York Times Magazine) has some kind things to say about my recent op-ed, but is less optimistic than I am about Promise Neighborhoods:
Heckman: Look, President Eisenhower built the highway system. President Obama could build the child production system if he wanted to. It would have a much higher payoff than a lot of the programs that are currently there. If you do a cost/benefit analysis of the rate of return for job training, if you talk about early convict rehabilitation programs or literacy training for adults, the rates of return on those programs are generally quite low, very low. It’s just a question of using the same dollars wisely.
Last week there was a great op-ed piece in the New York Times by Paul Tough. He pointed out that we’re spending billions, $8.2 billion a year on Head Start, and Head Start is not a very effective program.
If you had an enriched version of Head Start and invested the same amount of money, you’d get much higher payout in the long run. Each of these programs has a political barnacle connected with it. People are promoting it because they see some advantage, but at the same time there’s really no value in those programs. The point is it’s not a question of raising new money, it’s a question of using existing money wisely.
Klein: If somehow the economy gets to a place where [the Obama administration] can move on to other issues, what would a good first step, federally, be, in moving toward high-quality early education?
Heckman: What you do is move beyond the Harlem Children’s Zone focus that seems to have gripped the administration. That’s fine, but it hasn’t really been evaluated in any serious way yet and it’s not clear that’s the answer.
The key idea is to encourage more experimentation across a broader range of projects, targeting a larger range of people and providing a refocus of what these programs are all about, which is teaching aspects of self-confidence and teaching these soft skills which are typically ignored in a lot of social and political life.
I think my one worry about the success of the Harlem Children’s Zone is people are going to think it is easy. They look at how the Harlem Children’s Zone is now, and don’t see all of the hard work, wrong turns, and dismal failures that went into making it the success that it is today. What I think any community will need if they are going to try to do this is persistence, dedication, faith, a long term vision, and a sense that they are going to do whatever it takes.
From two very different publications, articles about the Harlem Children’s Zone and the prospect of Promise Neighborhoods. In Real Change News, a weekly paper sold by the homeless in Seattle, an interview with Geoffrey Canada, in which he recounts the advice he has given the Obama Administration about Promise Neighborhoods:
We felt like they had to go with the right leadership. They had to get communities that were already down the road on figuring out their area and working out the collaboration issues. There had to be some structure for management in place, and there had to be resources so that it wouldn’t be under resourced, and a real commitment of local leadership — for the vision of the community and not for the individual schools. We thought those were some of the must-haves in the first few of these that have come up. So we’ve had those kinds of conversations with the administration.
And in Forbes, Nicole Perlroth cautions:
Any school rescue program that relies less on donations and more on taxpayer money is at risk of becoming a captive of the education establishment. A two-year project to replicate the Zone in Jacksonville, Fla. saw its largest private donor, the Chartrand Foundation, back out when it appeared that the program would be run by government officials and lack the Zone’s accountability.
Rob Wildeboer, a criminal-justice reporter for WBEZ radio in Chicago, hosted the panel discussion that followed my speech at Loyola University Law School last week. Before the event, Rob and I sat down in the WBEZ studio for an interview about the Harlem Children’s Zone and Promise Neighborhoods. The interview aired on Friday as part of the local “All Things Considered” broadcast. Here’s the audio.