How Idealistic High-Tech Schools Often Fail to Help Poor Kids Get Ahead

The Benefits of Computers and Special Instruction Are Eclipsed by Economic Disadvantage

About a decade ago, as the global economy shuddered, an 11-year-old boy sat at a desk with a laptop computer in the hallway of an experimental school in New York City. I stood with other adults watching the student demonstrate a software program that allowed him to design video games. Between the boy and us, a production crew for a local TV news affiliate was filming for a story on this well-resourced public middle school that had opened two months earlier. The TV crew had moved the boy, the desk, …

The Small California Farm Town That Puts Kids First

Against All Odds, Gonzales—Population 9,000—Offers Services That Touch the Lives of All Its Young People

What if California actually decided to put the needs of its poor kids first? What would that look like?

Here’s one answer: it might look like Gonzales, a small city of …

The Pioneering Cornell Anatomist Who Sought to Bring ‘Honor’ and ‘Duty’ to College Life

At the Turn of the 20th Century, Burton Green Wilder Railed Against Frivolous Activities and Thought Privileged Students Should Hold Each Other to Higher Standards

In 1901, Cornell University students created a new holiday on campus, called “Spring Day.”

Many faculty members objected to the holiday, but few were as visible and vocal as professor Burt …

When Baltimore Medical Students Were Free to Rob the City’s Graves

In 19th-Century Maryland, Stealing Corpses Wasn't a Crime. And a Half-Dozen Medical Schools Needed Cadavers.

Railroads changed everything. The formation in 1828 of the nation’s first common carrier, the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, revolutionized transportation, altered people’s sense of time and place, and knitted America …

California Sticks Its Schoolkids’ Futures in a Vise

Even with Record Education Funding, Escalating Retirement Costs and Expensive New Demands Have Brought School Districts to the Brink

Don’t squeeze your kids too hard as you send them off to another school year, because the state of California is already squeezing your kids hard enough to hurt their …

How Attending Elite Universities Helped Mormons Enter the Mainstream 

Through Higher Education, Latter-day Saints Joined the U.S. Meritocracy and Transformed Their Own Identity

The history of Mormon “Americanization” has long puzzled those who try to understand it.

In the last quarter of the 19th century, Mormons, under immense pressure from local and federal …