Save Our Children, Save Our School, Pearson Broke the Golden Rule
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In an imaginary conversation at Café Griensteidl in New York City twelve venerable women scholars outdo nine very rich dangerously misguided men of enormous power. Bill Gates appears and so does Sir Michael Barber of Pearson, along with Shakespeare’s Lady Macbeth and Dorothy Lintott of Alan Bennett’s History Boys. Scenes from Isaac Asimov’s Nightfall and Italo Calvino’s Daughters of the Moon are folded in. Sarah Montague of BBC’s Hardtalk, Jeremy Paxman of Nightline, and researcher and historian of education Diane Ravitch, all play their parts. Thomas Piketty of Capital in the Twenty-First Century briefly appears, as do Louis C.K. of Louie and John Cleese of Monty Python and Fawlty Towers. With the title a parody on a nursery rhyme, this satire defies categorization. It conjures up all the powers of drama, tragedy, and comedy, with the help of the celebrated diners at Café Griensteidl, a teacher and parent demonstration, and rappers, in a New York street scene celebration where Amsterdam meets Broadway. It is a cosmological allegory which combines scientific realism and musical comedy to set the stage for the last act in which twelve venerable women scholars appear to expose the political skullduggery, nefarious practices, avarice, and greed behind the coup d’état – officially called the Whole System Global Education Revolution – that is dismantling the US public school system, destroying democracy, and threatening the present and future lives of our children.