September 1996

Teacher, Vol. 08, Issue 01
School Choice & Charters First Of His Kind
In 1976 Leonard Defiore became the first lay person to be named superintendent of schools for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington, D.C.
Jeff Archer, January 28, 2020
1 min read
Teaching Profession The Candidate
In the age of outsider politics, metaphors come cheap. No one knows this better than Victor Morales, the 46-year-old high school government teacher who will face formidable Texas Senator Phil Gramm this November.
Mimi Swartz, September 4, 1996
20 min read
Teaching Profession Expert Testimony
Christina Maslach first became interested in the study of human emotions as a graduate student at Berkeley. "I was looking for a new line of research," she says.
Jeff Meade, September 4, 1996
2 min read
Infrastructure Burglar Alarm
Social studies teacher Guadalupe De La Torre was making copies in his high school's faculty lounge about 6 a.m. one day last March, and he didn't give a second thought to whether the nearby laptop computer he had been using was safe. He should have.
Peter West, September 4, 1996
4 min read
Teaching Profession Burnout
Robin Turgeon is toying with the idea of physical therapy. She thinks it might be the cure for what ails her. Unfortunately, what ails Turgeon is teaching--27 years as a New York City junior high school science teacher.
Jeff Meade, September 4, 1996
13 min read
Teaching Profession Warning Signs
Are you suffering from burnout? The following signs and symptoms could be cause for concern.
Jeff Meade, September 4, 1996
1 min read
School & District Management Who Should Run Schools?
Michigan has given up one of the basic jobs of running a state school system: On July 1, the state became the first in the nation to stop certifying school administrators. Local boards can hire anyone they want to run schools.
Lynn Olson, September 4, 1996
2 min read
School & District Management Report Roundup
Following is a guide to recent reports in education and related fields and information on how to order copies.
September 4, 1996
4 min read
School & District Management Books
Because most of us talk about reforming schools as opposed to eliminating them, it is tempting to see "deschoolers"--a sobriquet derived from the title of Ivan Illich's 1970 manifesto, Deschooling Society--as members of a fringe movement.
David Ruenzel, September 4, 1996
5 min read
School Climate & Safety Building on the Past
For a few days in the fall of 1957, Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas, became the setting for one of the most dramatic confrontations in the struggle for black civil rights.
Kerry A. White, September 4, 1996
2 min read
School & District Management Odd Man Out
There's something unusual about Room 130: The teacher in this classroom is a man.
David Hill, September 4, 1996
24 min read
Teaching Profession Standard Bearers
Only 15 states have academic standards worthy of a passing grade, according to a report card on state standard-setting prepared by the American Federation of Teachers.
Karen Diegmueller, September 4, 1996
4 min read
School & District Management Mixed Bag
Robert Blair, the principal of Southside Primary School in Shelbyville, Kentucky, thinks his state's requirement that schools place young students of different ages in the same class is a good idea.
Debra Viadero, September 4, 1996
10 min read
School Climate & Safety Space Mission
The superintendent of the Houston school system has proposed turning to private schools as one option for dealing with serious overcrowding.
Mark Walsh, September 4, 1996
4 min read
School Choice & Charters Choice: Judge OKs Voucher Plan
An Ohio judge has deemed Cleveland's school-choice program constitutional, opening the door for 2,000 low-income children to enroll in private and religious schools at state expense.
Mark Walsh, September 4, 1996
3 min read
Infrastructure Spinning A Web
NetDay96, the highly publicized volunteer effort in March to wire California's schools for computer networks, will go nationwide in October, with as many as 40 states expected to stage one-day events.
Andrew Trotter, September 4, 1996
4 min read
Equity & Diversity Opinion Desert Bloom
To live in Thoreau, New Mexico, is to know the great unspoken sadness present on American Indian reservations. Last year my wife, Jenny, and I were teachers at a Roman Catholic mission school for Navajo children in Thoreau, on the edge of a Navajo reservation.
Duncan Shaw, September 4, 1996
4 min read
Teaching Profession Letter to the Editor Letters
In response to the article "Buyer Beware," I would like to offer my encouragement to Nicholas Thacher, the teacher who told his colleagues at a professional development conference that teachers should admit to students when they can't answer a question.
September 4, 1996
2 min read
Assessment Opinion Free of Finals
If I need to rely on a big final exam to find out what my students have learned, or not learned, over the course of the school year, then I'm not doing my job very well.
Lou Orfanella, September 4, 1996
3 min read
School & District Management Findings

The Curse Of The Valedictorian


High school valedictorians rarely turn out to be top achievers or risk-takers in life. That's what Boston College researcher Karen Arnold found after tracking 46 women and 35 men who were at the top of their high school classes when they graduated in 1981. By age 32, few of the valedictorians, Arnold found, had turned out to be outstanding in their fields or had taken unconventional paths. "They're extremely well-rounded and successful, personally and professionally," says Arnold, who is an associate professor of education. "But they've never been devoted to a single area in which they put all their passion. They obey rules, work hard, and like learning, but they're not the mold-breakers." For the most part, she found, the former valedictorians chose careers in accounting, law, medicine, engineering, and teaching. And the career ambitions of the women faded as they grew older. Midway through college, many of the women switched their majors from a high-powered technical field to occupations traditionally dominated by females--even though their grades had been high. Seven women quit their jobs later to raise children. "They decided there are lots of ways to be intelligent, not just through occupational success," Arnold says. She discovered that, as college students, the valedictorians were never sufficiently mentored on choosing and developing a career. Four never even finished college. "Just because they could get A's doesn't mean they can translate academic achievement into career achievement," she says. Her findings are the subject of a new book, Lives of Promise: What Becomes of High School Valedictorians, published by Jossey-Bass Publishers.
Debra Viadero, September 4, 1996
4 min read
Education News in Brief
News in Brief

September 4, 1996
9 min read