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American Educator
Fall 2010


Table of Contents

Beyond One-Size-Fits-All College Dreams
Alternative Pathways to Desirable Careers
By James E. Rosenbaum, Jennifer L. Stephan, and Janet E. Rosenbaum

The vast majority of high school students plan to attend college—and believe that a bachelor's degree all but guarantees them a high-paying job. What many of them don't know is that those who are not well prepared are not likely to graduate. They also don't realize that plenty of career-focused certificates and associate's degrees lead to satisfying careers that pay just as well as, and sometimes better than, careers that require a bachelor's degree. If detailed information on the broad array of higher education and career options were made available to them, students would have more incentive to work hard in high school and a better chance of achieving their dreams.

What Message Does the College-for-All Movement Send?
By Chris Myers Asch

Higher Education and the Economy
By Grover J. "Russ" Whitehurst

Web Extra: For a radio documentary and website featuring James Rosenbaum and several community college students, click here.

Sparks Fade, Knowledge Stays
The National Early Literacy Panel's Report Lacks Staying Power
By Susan B. Neuman

Her mother's advice on finding a life partner comes to the author's mind when reviewing a major meta-analysis on developing literacy. While mom said to avoid the "flashy types" and pick someone with "staying power," the experts who wrote this report focused on only the most obvious components of developing early literacy. They failed to consider the component with staying power: background knowledge.

An Artful Summer
A Job Program Inspires Creativity and Teaches Responsibility
By Jennifer Dubin

Just as the economic downturn and narrowing of the curriculum have prompted school districts to cut art classes, a nonprofit organization in Baltimore gives disadvantaged youth the opportunity to create art, earn a stipend, and learn valuable job skills.

The Professional Educator
Lessons on Organizing for Power
By Louis Malfaro

The new secretary-treasurer of the Texas AFT and former president of Education Austin reflects on what he has learned in more than 20 years of union leadership. Chief among those lessons is how locals in states without collective bargaining can work with their school districts to do what's best for their members and the children they serve.

Education for All
Child Labor for None

With more than 50 million American children returning to school this fall, we present photos, data, and action steps to call attention to the plight of the world's 215 million child laborers, and the ways their education and development suffer.


All articles available in PDF format only.

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About American Educator

American Educator is a quarterly journal of educational research and ideas published by the American Federation of Teachers. Recent articles have focused on such topics as reducing the achievement gap between poor and affluent students, heading off student discipline problems, teaching an appreciation and understanding of democracy, the benefits of a common coherent curriculum, and other issues affecting children and education here and abroad. Total circulation, as of our most recent issue, is over 900,000.

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American Educator, Summer 2010 cover

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