Of General Interest
Educating, by D. Bob Gowin (Cornell University Press, 124 Roberts Pl., Ithaca, N.Y. 14850; 210 pages; $18.50).
"A new justification for schooling is sorely needed," writes educator D. Bob Gowin, a professor of education at Cornell University, so that a better framework is established for the study of education. Mr. Gowin's theory holds that educating is a set of deliberate activities, an "eventful process" that changes students' lives. The by-product of the theory should be to change our schools from places that serve "social utilities" to places where boredom is reduced, living enhanced, and the meaning of human experience changed, according to Mr. Gowin.
Playing the Private College Admissions Game, by Richard Moll (Penguin Books, 625 Madison Ave., New York, N.Y. 10022; 214 pages; paper $3.95).
A student's standardized test score is not the most important part of his or her record. A low-cost institution is not necessarily poor in quality. Personal evaluations play a significant role in college acceptance. These and other pieces of advice are provided for the high-school senior by Mr. Moll, dean of admissions at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and former admissions officer at Harvard and Yale Universities and Vassar and Bowdoin Colleges. Using several mock admissions committee sessions, which include examples of typical students and their records, Mr. Moll describes how decisions are made, documented by quotations from admissions officers from various private colleges. Originally published by Times Books in 1979, this is the first paperback edition. Contains five appendices on topics ranging from financial aid to transfer patterns.
Reform and Retrenchment: The Politics of California School Finance Reform, by Richard F. Elmore and Milbrey Wallin McLaughlin (Ballinger Publishing Company, P.O. Box 281, 54 Church St., Cambridge, Mass. 02138; 280 pages; $20, forthcoming.)
An examination of the politics of school finance reform in California, the book also addresses the broader question of equity as an objective for education policy. Based on interviews with those involved in California's reform movement, the authors explore the problems of shaping reform policy in response to court mandates. Focusing on the 1968 case of Serrano v. Priest, which initiated school finance reform in California and set the agenda for legislative debate, they address the problems faced by state legislators and lawyers in the case and the problem of how to construct pro-reform coalitions. Intended for those involved in developing school-finance policy, including educational administrators, legislators, and researchers. Mr. Elmore is an associate professor of public affairs at the University of Washington and associate director of the university's Institute for Public Policy and Management; Mr. McLaughlin is a senior social scientist with the Rand Corporation. The book is a Rand Educational Policy Study.
Vulnerable But Invincible: A Longitudinal Study of Resilient Children and Youth, by Emmy E. Werner and Ruth S. Smith (McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1221 Avenue of the Americas, New York, N.Y. 10020; 256 pages; $18.95).
Based on a 20-year study of children facing high emotional, physical, or social risks, this book addresses the issue of children and psychological resiliency from infancy to adulthood. Ms. Werner, a professor of human development at the University of California, Davis, and Ms. Smith, clinical psychologist practicing on the island of Kauai, examined a group of multiracial, cross-cultural Hawaiian children from 1955-1975, examining the disruptive effect their extreme poverty had on their family lives. Based on their findings, the authors identify characteristics that separate resilient chilren from those who cannot withstand the stress of disruptive situations (such as sex-identification) and discuss the role of "caregiver" and the early identification of possibly stressful events. Includes case studies of individual children and an appendix of statistical findings.
For Special Interests
American Indian Stereotypes in the World of Children: A Reader and Bibliography, by Arlene B. Hirschfelder (Scarecrow Press, Inc., 52 Liberty St., P.O. Box 656, Metuchen, N.J. 08840; 312 pages; $17.50).
Lists books and articles dealing with the emergence of the stereotype of the American Indian as savage, noble, and lazy. The selections listed address children's attitudes toward Indians, the images of Indians in children's books, and ways to correct the unreal images presented. For preschool, and elementary- and secondary-school educators.