Hows And Whys Of Alternative Education

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It has become a cliché to say that these are precarious times for public schools. It is also a reality. On the one hand, improving schools is the public's top priority. On the other, significant numbers of Americans are giving up on public schools. Today's parents and, indeed, all voters, need to see signs of success if they are to support public schools. Parents must be given choices when it comes to their child's education. This book acknowledges that enormous problems outside schools do not mean that educators inside schools cannot do a better job at creating a meaningful learning environment. It is designed to inform and assist those who wish to choose their child's educational settings. The Hows and Whys of Alternative Education offers the essential information on the history of alternative education, school choice, alternative schools, charter schools, magnet schools, homeschooling, private schools, vouchers, distance learning, teacher/student/parent attraction, and the future of educational choice.

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Editorial Reviews

John King Ed.D.
Darlene Leiding has once again proven she is one of the country's leading advocates for the rights of all children to receive a quality education. In her latest book, she again raises the point that education must be tailored to the learning needs and style of the student, not the teaching style of the instructor. She makes it clear that a "one size fits all" approach to education in this melting pot we call America threatens the future of our youth…She presents a comprehensive look at school choice and lays out the pros and cons of the various options to make education more accessible, engaging and successful for the divergent segments of today's youth.
Darwin Burda
Darlene Leiding uses her perspective on charter school performance to suggest a more positive approach to an educational crisis in America. She presents productive alternatives to a public school system locked up in bureaucracy and ineffective politically correct thinking. This is a fresh new way of looking at education which all administrators should take to heart.
Charles A. Speiker
This is a must read book for the individual who has a predisposition to helping children, no matter what the vehicle. Whether the child will best thrive in a home school, private school, or alternative public school setting, the book can assist parents in their discernment. It can provide parents and guardians with the technical and conceptual tools necessary to comfortably choose a school that will educate and liberate each child in need.

The book may also be of benefit to individuals, especially administrators, educators and board members of public and private schools who occasionally allow the collective history to pass as innovative and new. The book can assist the reader in an exploration of alternative education and "its many flavors." It can aid the reader in an understanding that the movement of alternative education is as old as Plato choosing a log that will fit the willing learner. As a mature movement in education, it calls out not to be tamed nor resisted, but to be utilized for the benefit of all children.

I know Dr. Darlene Leiding as an accomplished educator, administrator and now as a leading advocate for the needs of all children. I am indebted to this writer for her contributions to my education.

Judy Schulze
Dr. Leiding presents a compelling reason for the development of alternative programs for educating America's youth. Her extensive background in working with disadvantaged children in urban schools and her research provide an insight that can be most helpful for parents, educators, and policy makers. Dr. Leiding cites that many children do not come to school prepared to learn and, as effective as our public schools are with most students, many schools are not prepared to deal with them. Because of circumstances beyond the control of the school, these children continue to be a challenge to educate. As she points out, the goal is to provide an education where students will become self-sufficient and self-empowered adults, with the skills to be marketable for jobs and/or able to move on to a post secondary education. However, the methodology or approach providing that education may have to be different from the mainstream education that is typically considered public education.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781578866878
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 10/28/2007
  • Pages: 200
  • Product dimensions: 0.63 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 6.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Dr. Darlene Leiding is an expert in the realm of charter schools and alternative education and has created an elementary and high school alternative program. She is currently K-12 Principal at Oh Day Aki (Heart of the Earth Charter School, Minneapolis, MN) working with inner city American Indian students.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 History of Alternative Education Chapter 2 School Choice: Trust for Parents' Picks Chapter 3 Alternative Schools: A School of One's Own Chapter 4 Charter Schools: A Beacon of Hope Chapter 5 Magnet Schools: The Stuff of Kids' Dreams Chapter 6 Homeschooling: Testing Our Freedom Chapter 7 Private Schools: An Investment in the Future Chapter 8 Vouchers: Threatening to Make Schools Improve Chapter 9 Distance Learning: The Wave of the Future Chapter 10 Teacher/Student/Parent Attraction Chapter 11 The Future of Educational Choice: Does It Work?

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