Bill Gates searches for the magic pill.

white-rabbitWhen logic and proportion have fallen sloppy dead. And the White Knight is talking backwards and the Red Queen’s “off with her head!” Remember what the dormouse said: “Keep your head.” -White Rabbit, Jefferson Airplane.

Do you want to know how to be a great basketball player? Easy. Do everything LeBron James does.

Want to be a great scientific thinker and theoretical physicist? Copy the things Stephen Hawking does.

Ever have a desire to play great jazz? Put a video recorder on Winton Marsalis.

The latest venture by the Gates Foundation to spend their money to fix what they think is broken about education is what they call “the magic pill.”

Simple really. It’s all about teacher quality, right? The solution then is pretty simple. Find out who the good teachers are. Figure out what they’re doing and get everyone else to do the same thing. (Slap forehead. Say, “Duh.” Play the sound of Gates’ millions of dollars more flushing down the toilet.)

Ever since Americans sent their children to one-room schoolhouses, parents have known what makes a good school: an inspiring, organized, creative teacher. But researchers haven’t been able to quantify what exactly makes a teacher effective and how to tie that to student achievement.

Now the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation — an influential voice in education policy today — hopes to end that confusion. Nine years and $2 billion into its work to improve America’s public schools, the Seattle-based foundation is turning its focus to teacher effectiveness.

“We’ve been sort of looking around for the silver bullet for education reform, and actually the answer has been right under our feet the whole time,” said John Deasy, deputy director of the foundation’s education work.

(Source: AP)

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