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The Commercialization of Public Schools

A few years ago, I remember that our school had televisions in every classroom, and they would automatically turn on each day during homeroom to show Channel One. I remember seeing it and watching it and wondering if it was really all that effective.

I was reminded of this again today when I came across this article by Trent that asks basically the same question. His article (and the book he references) go much deeper than my pondering did a few years back. I was really inspired to read it, so I figured I’d share it with some other educators around and see what your take is on it.

Joel Wagner
Joel Wagner (<strong><a href="http://www.twitter.com/sywtt">@sywtt</a></strong>) began teaching band in 2002. Though he had a lot of information, his classes were out of control. He found himself tired, frustrated, disrespected by students, lonely, and on the brink of quitting. He had had enough. He resigned from his school district right before spring break of his second year and made it his personal mission to learn to be a great teacher. <strong><a href="http://www.soyouwanttoteach.com/">So You Want To Teach?</a></strong> is the ongoing story of that quest for educational excellence.
http://www.SoYouWantToTeach.com

5 thoughts on “The Commercialization of Public Schools

  1. The commercialization is scary. I worked at a school that considered Channel 1. We ultimately turned it down because we didn’t want to subject a captive audience to the commercials and to content outside our control.

    While there is no escaping commercialism, I do believe schools should make an effort. The scoreboard in my school’s gymnasium says “Pepsi” on it. We have several soft drink machines in the school that are emblazoned with company names.

    Even my own classroom is not immune. I use Texas Instruments graphing calculators and Vernier probe equipment.

    I have seen schools go over the line, but I’ll be darned if I can figure out exactly where that line is.

  2. I remember being in middle school and watching Channel One News. I really enjoyed the mornings or afternoons watching the news while the day was just beginning. When I got into high school hardly any TVs had good cable and Channel 1 News was no longer. Cable in the classroom should be in the classrooms for educational and a learning usage.

  3. I am not familiar with Channel One, but I love the article by Trent. His blog has quite a bit of informative reading. I always find great links on your blog.:)

  4. There is a high school band in northern California which is “sponsored” by a candy company based in the same city. In recent years, Gov. Schwarzenegger has banned such candy from public schools. I’ve often wondered how that decision might have affected the sponsorship. After reading that article, my curiosity has shifted to how the sponsorship may have affected the weight/health/eating habits of the band members and their families.

  5. Wow. A corporately sponsored high school band. It’s one thing for drumcorps who are sponsored by Pearl Drums or Yamaha Silent Brass or Vic Firth sticks or whatever. But a candy company??? Seems a bit odd to say the least…

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