After School Africa

30(+1) Thought-Provoking and Controversial Educational Quotes to get you Thinking

After School Africa

May 24, 2012

In a previous post I shares 101 motivational quotes for students and learners. Today I want to share with you 30 thought-provoking and controversial educational quotes. Since the institution of education and spoken words, as old as time, there has been diverse school of thought regarding the impact of formal and self education to individual lives. With economic recession, high graduate unemployment and the general perception of higher education, some of these quotes will challenge you to approach and threat your education from a different perspective.

controversial education quotes

Ponder over these educational quotes and see how it relates to your current educational status. But before you get reading, remember the Chinese proverb; If you believe everything you read, better don’t read at all.

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1. This is the mark of an educated mind: to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.

2. Without education, we are in a horrible and deadly danger of taking educated people seriously.

G.K. Chesterton

3. I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.

4. Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.

Mahatma Gandhi

5. You can never be overdressed or overeducated

Oscar Wilde

6. You educate a man; you educate a man. You educate a woman; you educate a generation.

Brigham Young

7. [Kids] don’t remember what you try to teach them. They remember what you are.

8. Whatever the price of our libraries, the price is cheap compared to that of an ignorant nation.

Walter Cronkite

9. Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self-confidence.

Robert Frost

10. You know sometimes kids get bad grades in school because the class moves too slow for them. Einstein got D’s in school. Well guess what, I get F’s.

Bill Watterson

11. Education is not to teach you but to awaken you.

12. Education: the part from cocky ignorance to miserable uncertainty.

13. The task of the modern educator is not to cut down jungles, but to irrigate deserts.

14. Intelligence plus character- that is the goal of true education.

Martin Luther King Jr.

15. In real life, I assure you, there is no such thing as algebra.

Fran Lebowitz

16. Study without desire spoils the memory, and it retains nothing that it takes in.

Leonardo da Vinci

17. The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.

Augustine of Hippo

18. Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make man a more clever devil.

19. Prejudices, it is well known, are most difficult to eradicate from the heart whose soil has never been loosened or fertilized by education: they grow there, firm as weeds among stones.

Charlotte Bronte

20. Ideally, what should be said to every child, repeatedly, throughout his or her school life is something like this; “ You are in the process of being indoctrinated. We have not yet evolved a system of education that is not a system of indoctrination. We are sorry, but it is the best we can do. What you are being taught here is an amalgam of current prejudice and the choices of this particular culture. The slightest look at history will show how impermanent these must be. You are being taught by people who have been able to accommodate themselves to a regime of thought laid down by their predecessors. It is a self-perpetuating system. Those of you who are robust and individual than others will be encouraged to leave and find ways of educating yourself – educating your own judgments. Those that stay must remember, always and all the time, that they are being moulded and patterned to fit into narrow and particular needs of this particular society .

Doris Lessing

21. The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled.

22. Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all

23. The more I live, the more I learn. The more I learn, the more I realize, the less I know.

Michel Legrand

24. Children must be taught how to think and not what to think.

Margaret Mead

25. A good head and good heart are always a formidable combination. But when you add to that a literate tongue or pen, then you have something very special.

Nelson Mandela

26. It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.

27. Education consists mainly of what you have unlearned.

28. Getting an education was a bit like a communicable sexual disease. It made you unsuitable for a lot of jobs and then you had the urge to pass it on

Terry Pratchett

29. Marriage can wait; education cannot.

Khaled Hosseini

30. Do not train a child to learn by force or harshness; but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.

31. The man who reads nothing is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers.

Thomas Jefferson

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Develop Good Habits

95 Education Quotes: Inspire Children, Parents, AND Teachers

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Why is education important?

Education is the key to everything that is good in our world today. Advances in computers, information technology, math, medicine, psychology, engineering and every other discipline would be impossible if education didn't help us build on the advances of the great minds that came before us.

In fact, it is essential that as a society that we keep learning new things . Education is not only about the past and present, but it is also the key to the future. It will help discipline our children for the intellectual challenges of the rest of the 21st century. And it not only teaches our children facts but also teaches them how to think and learn on their own.

So to honor all educators, teachers, administrators, professors and even those involved in cutting edge online education, here are 95 education quotes that will hopefully provide you with a bit of inspiration.

These quotes about education show both the past and present views on education. They also show clearly why education is also so important for our future.

Let's get to it…

Table of Contents

What is a Good Education?

There will always be arguments about what is taught in schools. Socrates was fed poison for teaching the “wrong things”. William of Ockam and Galileo are two great examples that philosophy and science have always been controversial topics (to understate the issue) when education runs counter to the status quo.

The line on what is good education seems to keep moving.

With common core and year-round schools coming into vogue these days, schools are a very different place than when I was a kid. And education 50 years from now will be even more different. I imagine 3-D display classrooms, with virtual summer bulletin boards and a ton of technology streamlining learning. (Even now, you check out the best educational apps that kids can use to better engage in learning .)

Yes, the future of education may seem strange to us today, but the changes will be made for the better of the student, or the changes will not last long.

When I think of, “what is good education” one quote comes to my mind. A quote by John Fitzgerald Kennedy that I think encapsulates what a good education is really all about:

quotes about education

(Are you a teacher looking to create goals for the next school year? Our post on SMART goals examples for teachers might help! )

With our first education quote out of the way, I will stop my essay, and give you a look at what you can expect from the rest of this quote post.

This article will feature many education quotes by many of the greatest thinkers of all time: Albert Einstein, George Santayana, Confucius, Maya Angelou, Francis Bacon, Nelson Mandela, Gandhi, and Benjamin Franklin

But all these quotes are not just the serious musings of the bright lights from history. Many entertainers have chimed in over the years with their own quotes about the importance of education. This list has education quotes from Jim Henson, Dr. Seuss , H.G Wells, C.S. Lewis, Katey Sagal, Tupac Shakur, and Lady Gaga.

Without further ado, let’s get to the education quotes. Starting first with the most important aspect of education: kids. As the late Whitney Houston sang “ I believe that children are our are future.  Teach them well and let them lead the way ”

Let's start by focusing on quotes about the impact of education on children…

Education Quotes for Kids

  • “Kids don’t remember what you try to teach them. They remember what you are.” – Jim Henson
  • “The more that you read, the more things you will know, the more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”– Dr. Seuss
  • “Do not confine your children to your own learning, for they were born in another time.” – Chinese proverb
  • “A child educated only at school is an uneducated child.” – George Santayana
  • “Children just need the time, space, and permission to be kids.” – Angela Hanscom
  • “Children must be taught how to think, not what to think.” – Margaret Mead

Discover informative education quotes for students and teachers. You will learn many quotes on why education is important, education quotes about success, and education quotes about teachers. #education #learning #motivation #positivethinking #success #change #affirmation #quotestoliveby #quotesoftheday #lifequotes

  • “Children have to be educated, but they have also to be left to educate themselves.” – Ernest Dimnet
  • “The more that you read, the more things you will know, the more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr. Seuss
  • “Education breeds confidence. Confidence breeds hope. Hope breeds peace.” – Confucius
  • “Too often we give children answers to remember rather than problems to solve.” – Roger Lewin
  • “Every act of conscious learning requires the willingness to suffer an injury to one’s self-esteem. That is why young children before they are aware of their own self-importance, learn so easily.” – Thomas Szasz
Every act of conscious learning requires the willingness to suffer an injury to one’s self-esteem. That is why young children before they are aware of their own self-importance, learn so easily.” – Thomas Szasz
  • “Please stop teaching my children that everyone gets a trophy just for participating. What is this, the Nobel Prize? Not everybody gets a trophy.” – Glenn Beck
  • “Any book that helps a child to form a habit of reading, to make reading one of his deep and continuing needs, is good for him.” – Maya Angelou
  • “The greatest sign of success for a teacher… is to be able to say, ‘The children are now working as if I did not exist.’” – Maria Montessori
  • “Children need love, especially when they do not deserve it.” – Harold Hulbert
  • “I agree that a love of reading is a great gift for a parent to pass on to his or her child.” – Ann Brashares
  • “Educate your children to self-control, to the habit of holding passion and prejudice and evil tendencies subject to an upright and reasoning will, and you have done much to abolish misery from their future and crimes from society.” – Benjamin Franklin
  • “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”– Nelson Mandela
Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. ”– Nelson Mandela
  • “Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them.” – James Baldwin
  • “Education is a once in a lifetime opportunity to open children’s hearts and minds to the unbelievable wonder of the universe.” – Sir Anthony Seldon

Educational Quotes to Motivate Your Students

Creating self-motivation is a challenge . It's even harder to generate motivation in a classroom setting.

While a few kids are motivated to do well from their own thirst for knowledge. Most are not.

Particularly younger kids may go into school kicking and screaming the whole way. While the best motivation will always be intrinsic motivation something has to be done to give kids that initial motivation until they grow up enough to motivate themselves.

Parents and teachers are always working up new tricks to give these students a bit of motivation. Of course, in many ways the best motivation for the young kids remains the old “carrot and stick” method. Let the child self reward when they do good jobs and have a set of punishments when they do not live up to standards.

Not much has changed when it comes to motivation over the years, except you might be taking away time playing video games instead of taking away time from playing ball with their friends.

Regardless, some of the educational quotes below will hopefully help students gain a little bit of motivation, or at least give parents and educators some ideas on applying some extrinsic motivation.

  • ​ “Who questions much, shall learn much, and retain much.” – Francis Bacon
  • “You will either step forward into growth, or you will step backward into safety.” – Abraham Maslow
  • “Develop a passion for learning. If you do, you will never cease to grow.”– Anthony J. D'Angelo
Develop a passion for learning. If you do, you will never cease to grow.” – Anthony J. D'Angelo
  • “The real key to learning something quickly is to take a deliberate, intelligent approach to your learning.” – Lindsay Kolowich
  • “The essence of knowledge is, having it, to apply it; not having it, to confess your ignorance.” – Confucius
  • “When the student is ready, the master appears.” – Buddhist proverb

“When the student is ready, the master appears.” – Buddhist proverb

  • “Everybody’s a teacher if you listen.” – Doris Roberts
  • “Neither comprehension nor learning can take place in an atmosphere of anxiety.” – Rose Kennedy
  • “What we learn with pleasure we never forget.” – Alfred Mercier
  • “Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism.” – Dr. David M. Burns
  • “Learning starts with failure; the first failure is the beginning of education.” – John Hersey
  • “Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.” – Malcolm X
Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.” – Malcolm X
  • “Seeing much, suffering much, and studying much, are the three pillars of learning.” – Benjamin Disraeli
  • “We learn more by looking for the answer to a question and not finding it than we do from learning the answer itself.” – Lloyd Alexander
  • “Take the attitude of a student, never be too big to ask questions, never know too much to learn something new.” – Og Mandino
  • “Learning is not attained by chance; it must be sought for with ardour and diligence.” – Abigail Adams
  • “A smart man makes a mistake, learns from it, and never makes that mistake again. But a wise man finds a smart man and learns from him how to avoid the mistake altogether.” – Roy H. Williams
  • “Remember that failure is an event, not a person.” – Zig Ziglar
Remember that failure is an event, not a person.” – Zig Ziglar

Quotes About Education and Success

The section of quotes below I have titled “quotes about education and success”. These quotes deal a lot with what it takes to achieve success in learning and education.

Of course, “success” is sort of a nebulous term. What one person views as success, another might view as a failure. For some, success is raising their child to be a decent person, for another success might be making a lot of money . Or gaining fame. Or power. Or finding happiness . Ultimately success can be best defined by understanding your core values and what you value in life.

I have talked about success a lot here on this blog. It's a popular concept for people trying to change their habits because almost everybody wants to succeed in some aspect of their lives. They are trying to learn from the mistakes of others and thereby increase their own chances of success.

I have also written a lot of quote posts, similar to this one, relating to success in its many forms and giving inspiration to those seeking to succeed. If you want to check out these success quote posts, the following is a shortlist.

  • 51 Success Quotes from History's Most Famous People
  • 51 Achievement Quote to Inspire Your Journey to Sucess
  • Great quotes on Failure and Success
  • 100 Hard Work Quotes to Achieve All You Want in Life

You can also read up on few articles I have written about achieving success:

  • 21 Success Habits of Highly Organized People
  • 9 World Famous Successful People Who Failed and Overcame Adversity
  • 43 Experts Share Their #1 Success Habit

But enough about success in general. Let’s jump right into the quotes about education and success shared below.

  • “That best academy, a mother’s knee.” – James Russell Lowell
  • “I think our job as parents is to give our kids roots to grow and wings to fly.” – Deborah Norville
  • “There is no school equal to a decent home and no teacher equal to a virtuous parent.” – Mahatma Gandhi
  • “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” – WB Yeats

Look at this list of quotes on education. You will learn many quotes on why education is important, education quotes about success, and education quotes about teachers. #education #learning #positivity #quote #inspirational #motivationalquotes #mindset #change #positivethinking #mantra

  • “Being a mother has been my greatest teacher and also the most self-sacrificing thing I’ve ever done.” – Katey Sagal
  • “Don’t worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you.” – Robert Fulghum
  • “You can get help from teachers, but you are going to have to learn a lot by yourself, sitting alone in a room.” – Dr. Seuss
  • “The more certain kids are that someone’s got their back, the more confident and autonomous they can be.” – Melinda Wenner Moyer
The more certain kids are that someone’s got their back, the more confident and autonomous they can be. ” – Melinda Wenner Moyer
  • “ If you don’t feel safe as a child, you can’t learn.” – Lady Gaga
  • “Don’t limit a child to your own learning, for he was born in another time.” – Rabindranath Tagore
  • “It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength.” – Maya Angelou
  • “My parents encouraged thought. You’ll get through life better if you learn how to think.” – Holly Near
  • “I believe that a parent’s role is to provide a path or opportunity for their children.” – David Soul
  • “It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.” – Frederick Douglass
  • “The best way to make children good is to make them happy.” – Oscar Wilde
T he best way to make children good is to make them happy .” – Oscar Wilde
  • “Children are apt to live up to what you believe of them.” – Lady Bird Johnson
  • “Education… is painful, continual and difficult work to be done in kindness, by watching, by warning, by praise, but above all — by example.” – John Ruskin
  • “Education is for improving the lives of others and for leaving your community and world better than you found it. – Marian Wright Edelman

Don't forget to look at list of education quotes. You will learn many quotes on why education is important, education quotes about success, and education quotes about teachers. #education #learning #purpose #quotes #motivation #selfimprovement #qotd #success #quoteoftheday #quotesoftheday

Quotes About Teachers and Teaching

At the heart of education lies the most important person in the educational world: the teacher.

A good teacher can change a student’s life far out of proportion to the amount of time they spend in their lives. Of course, A bad teacher can do the same, in a negative way. But fortunately, there are far more good teachers out there than bad ones.

The teacher quotes below are in honor of all the good teachers out there and for all the good they have done for students past, present and into the future.

  • ​ “The best teachers are those who show you where to look but don’t tell you what to see.” – Alexandra K. Trenfor
  • “Teachers are those who help us in resolving problems which, without them, we wouldn’t have.” – Unknown
  • “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” – William Arthur Ward

See more inspirational education quotes. You will learn many quotes on why education is important, education quotes about success, and education quotes about teachers. #education #learning #lifequotes #quotestoliveby #successquotes #inspiration #habits #inspirationalquotes #affirmation

  • “Teachers open the door, but you must enter by yourself.” – Chinese proverb
  • “The teacher who is indeed wise does not bid you to enter the house of his wisdom but rather leads you to the threshold of your mind.” – Khalil Gibran
  • “If we teach today’s students as we taught yesterday’s, we rob them of tomorrow.” – John Dewey
If we teach today’s students as we taught yesterday’s, we rob them of tomorrow.” – John Dewey
  • “There is no single way to educate.” – Michael Gurian
  • “I never teach my pupils; I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn.” – Albert Einstein
  • “Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three-fourths theater.” – Gail Goldwin
  • “Better than a thousand days of diligent study is one day with a great teacher.” – Japanese proverb
  • “As a teacher, my strategy is to encourage questioning. I’m the least authoritarian professor you’ll ever meet.” – Niall Ferguson
  • “I’m not sayin’ I’m gonna change the world, but I guarantee that I will spark the brain that will.” – Tupac Shakur
  • “A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.”– Henry Brooks Adams
A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.” – Henry Brooks Adams
  • “The first condition of education is being able to put someone to wholesome and meaningful work.” – John Ruskin
  • “Love is a better teacher than duty.” – Albert Einstein
  • “If I am walking with two other men, each of them will serve as my teacher. I will pick out the good points of the one and imitate them, and the bad points of the other and correct them in myself.” – Confucius
  • “Art in the classroom not only spurs creativity, it also inspires learning.” – Mickey Hart
  • “The true teacher defends his pupils against his own personal influence.” – Amos Bronson Alcott

Education Quotes About Experience and Mistakes

All education in life does not come at the hands of teachers. All learning does not take place in classrooms and labs.

One of the very best teachers in life is experience. Some people refuse to learn any other way, and even those that try to carefully learn before doing things will find they are often taught surprising lessons by experience.

For most of us, experience will be one of our best teachers. We just need to be self-aware enough to notice the lessons and learn from the mistakes.

The educational quotes below talk about making mistakes and learning from them. Do this often enough and you will begin to find wisdom and happiness .

  • “Experience is the teacher of all things.” – Julius Caesar
  • “Experience is a good teacher, but she sends in terrific bills.” – Minna Antrim
  • “What is defeat? Nothing but education. Nothing but the first step to something better.” – Wendell Phillips
  • “Intelligence plus character that is the goal of true education.” – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Take a look at this informative list of education quotes. You will learn many quotes on why education is important, education quotes about success, and education quotes about teachers. #education #learning #selfimprovement #qotd #success #quoteoftheday #quotesoftheday #lifequotes #quotestoliveby

  • “Experience: that most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn.” – C.S. Lewis
  • “Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self-confidence.” – Robert Frost
  • “The years teach much which the days never know.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • “Observation more than books, experience rather than persons, are the prime educators.” – A. Bronson Alcott
  • “A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.
  • “This world is your best teacher. There is a lesson in everything. There is a lesson in each experience. Learn it and become wise. Every failure is a stepping stone to success. Every difficulty or disappointment is a trial of your faith. Every unpleasant incident or temptation is a test of your inner strength. Therefore nil desperandum. March forward hero!” – Swami Sivananda
  • “Wisdom is the daughter of experience.” – Leonardo da Vinci
  • “Failure is a great teacher, and I think when you make mistakes and you recover from them and you treat them as valuable learning experiences, then you’ve got something to share.” – Steve Harvey
Failure is a great teacher, and I think when you make mistakes and you recover from them and you treat them as valuable learning experiences, then you’ve got something to share.” – Steve Harvey
  • “But I look at failure as education. In that respect, I am so well-educated.” – Kathy Ireland
  • “Experience, travel – these are an education in themselves.” – Euripides
  • “The trouble with learning from experience is that you never graduate.” – Doug Larson
  • “Our ability to achieve success depends on the strength of our wings gained through knowledge and experience. The greater our knowledge and experience, the higher we can fly.” – Catherine Pulsifer
  • “Your best teacher is your last mistake.” – Ralph Nader
  • “Prosperity is a great teacher; adversity a greater.” – William Hazlitt
Prosperity is a great teacher; adversity a greater.” – William Hazlitt
  • “By crawling, a child learns to stand.” – Hausa
  • “You have learned something. That always feels at first as if you had lost something.” – H.G. Wells

Final Thoughts on Quotes About Education

This final section of education quotes is a short one. It has only the most famous education quote. Along with the Kennedy quote I used in the beginning of this educational quote post, there is one more quote that I personally love about learning and education…

Want more quotes on education? You will learn many quotes on why education is important, education quotes about success, and education quotes about teachers. #education #learning #mantra #purpose #quotes #motivation #selfimprovement #qotd #success #quoteoftheday

I find this simple quote to be quite profound, and often ask myself this question when I think about my understanding of a concept. Could I explain it in ten words or less? Could I explain it to someone with no background in the subject? If the answer is no, I need to do more research.

Hopefully the quotes we showcased on this page inspired you a little to embrace the many benefits of learning and education. Taking the clay of our children and helping the parents too slowly mold children into thinking adults. It is a tough job, and often thankless. But by making this post I want to say to all teachers. Mine from the past, my child’s in the future and of course all other teachers out there.

And if you want more eye-opening quotes, be sure to check out these blog posts:

  • 82 Dream Big Quotes: Inspiration to Turn Your Dreams into Reality
  • 51 Best Growth Mindset Quotes for Kids
  • 103 Knowledge Quotes on the Importance of Always Learning

Finally, if you want to use these quotes to make a lasting change to your life, then watch this free video that details the 7-minute habit for planning your day to focus on what's truly important to you. .

Well…that's it from me. Now it's your turn…

What are your favorite education quotes?

Do you have a favorite from this list? If so, why?

Do you love an educational quote that did not make this list? If so, I would love to hear it?

Are you a teacher or an educator? If so let me know, just so I can say “thanks” for doing one of the most important jobs in the world. Teaching and molding the next generation. Ignite those fires of learning!

If you enjoyed this collection of education quotes, please take the time to share them on your favorite social media platform. Help me to help others discover these quotes.

education quotes | education quotes for children | education quotes for parents

4 thoughts on “95 Education Quotes: Inspire Children, Parents, AND Teachers”

Your education is a dress rehearsal for a life that is yours to lead. – Nora Ephron

Good Morning and thank you for the beautiful quotes, my favorite one is the one which says : The key to success is not through achievement but through enthusiasm., keep going thank you.

it is very nice qoutes mankind can learn from

I always love Dr. Seuss saying. It is really a good thing to keep on reading and learning new things in life. Let our mind soar to that wonderful world of books and new vocabulary.

Comments are closed.

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DIY Genius

100 Unconventional Quotes About Curiosity, Learning and Education

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As a highly energetic and creative person, having to sit in a classroom all day often felt like being in a prison. While I love to learn, I found the whole model of schooling to be backwards and impractical for my needs.

The factory-style education system is oriented toward a certain kind of individual and the more creative, risk-taking and entrepreneurial oriented people often don’t fit very well in traditional schools.

Sitting in a classroom or working in a typical corporate office all day certainly isn’t for everyone.

For those who want to do creative work and become an entrepreneur, the rote learning model in our standardized school system isn’t very good preparation for life.

Reimagining Education For The 21st Century:

The fast-changing 21st century world requires a passion-driven learning system in which students can develop intrinsic self-motivation.

I strongly believe to solve the massive problems we face today, we will need a complete reimagining of our education system where students are exposed to people of all ages, take some risks where they might fail publicly and work to solve real problems that exist in their communities.

Over the last few years, I’ve been collecting quotes in my Evernote from a wide range of history’s greatest thinkers about how to facilitate better learning experiences that inspire curiosity and encourage students to get more involved in their communities.

Here is the full collection of inspiring learning and education quotes:

Lifelong Learning Quotes:

“In my whole life, I have known no wise people (over a broad subject matter area) who didn’t read all the time — none. Zero.” ―  Charlie Munger, Self-Made Billionaire

“In times of change, learners inherit the Earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.”

― Eric Hoffer

“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.”

― Henry Ford

“In the end, the secret to learning is so simple: forget about it. Think only about whatever you love. Follow it, do it, dream about it. One day, you will glance up at your collection of Japanese literature, or trip over the solar oven you built, and it will hit you: learning was there all the time, happening by itself.”

― Grace Llewellyn

“Why should society feel responsible only for the education of children, and not for the education of all adults of every age?”

― Erich Fromm

“Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere.”

― Chinese Proverb

“All of the top achievers I know are life-long learners. Looking for new skills, insights, and ideas. If they’re not learning, they’re not growing and not moving toward excellence.”

― Denis Waitley

“I think the big mistake in schools is trying to teach children anything, and by using fear as the basic motivation. Fear of getting failing grades, fear of not staying with your class, etc. Interest can produce learning on a scale compared to fear as a nuclear explosion to a firecracker.”

― Stanley Kubrik

“It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.”

― Albert Einstein

Creativity Quotes:

"The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled." ― Plutarch

“We are drowning in information, while starving for wisdom. The world henceforth will be run by synthesizers, people able to put together the right information at the right time, think critically about it, and make important choices wisely.

― E. O. Wilson

“Cherish your visions and your dreams, as they are the children of your soul, the blueprints of your ultimate achievements.”

― Napoleon Hill

“There is no doubt that creativity is the most important human resource of all. Without creativity, there would be no progress, and we would be forever repeating the same patterns.”

― Edward de Bono

“Creativity now is as important in education as literacy, and we should treat it with the same status.”

― Ken Robinson

“Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things.”

― Steve Jobs

“Creativity is a type of learning process where the teacher and pupil are located in the same individual.”

― Arthur Koestler

“I believe this passionately: that we don’t grow into creativity, we grow out of it. Or rather, we get educated out if it.”

“The uncreative mind can spot wrong answers, but it takes a very creative mind to spot wrong questions.”

― Antony Jay

“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.”

― Source Unknown

“Every artist was at first an amateur.”

― Ralph W. Emerson

“Man’s mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions.”

― Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

“Creative work and critical thought, which produces new knowledge, can’t be conditioned; indeed, conditioning prevents these things from ever happening.”

― John Taylor Gatto

Learning By Doing Quotes:

“One must learn by doing the thing; for though you think you know it, you have no certainty, until you try.”

― Sophocles

“I hear and I forget.  I see and I remember. I do and I understand.”

Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.

― Benjamin Franklin

“Don’t learn to do, but learn in doing. Let your falls not be on a prepared ground, but let them be bona fide falls in the rough and tumble of the world.”

― Samuel Butler

“People learn more quickly by doing something or seeing something done.”

― Gilbert Highet

“Give me a fish and I eat for a day. Teach me to fish and I eat for a lifetime.”

Genius Quotes:

“I’ve concluded that genius is as common as dirt. We suppress our genius only because we haven’t yet figured out how to manage a population of educated men and women. The solution, I think, is simple and glorious. Let them manage themselves.”

“Do not train children in learning by force and harshness, but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.”

“It is as true now as it was then that no matter what tests show, very little of what is taught in school is learned, very little of what is learned is remembered, and very little of what is remembered is used. The things we learn, remember, and use are the things we seek out or meet in the daily, serious, non-school part of our lives.”

― John Holt

“The secret of genius is to carry the spirit of the child into ole age, which means never losing your enthusiasm.”

― Aldous Huxley

“Genius is the recovery of childhood at will.”

― Arthur Rimbaud

“No great mind has ever existed without a touch of madness.”

― Aristotle

“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not: the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.”

― Calvin Coolidge

Holistic Learning Quotes:

The ability to observe without evaluation is the highest form of intelligence. - Krishnamurti

“Principles for the Development of a Complete Mind: Study the science of art. Study the art of science. Develop your senses- especially learn how to see. Realize that everything connects to everything else.”

― Leonardo da Vinci

“The highest function of education is to bring about an integrated individual who is capable of dealing with life as a whole.”

― Krishnamurti

“What makes people smart, curious, alert, observant, competent, confident, resourceful, persistent – in the broadest and best sense, intelligent – is not having access to more and more learning places, resources and specialists, but being able in their lives to do a wide variety of interesting things that matter, things that challenge their ingenuity, skill, and judgement, and that make an obvious difference in their lives and the lives of the people around them.”

― John Holt

“Only the development of his inner powers can offset the dangers inherent in man’s losing control of the tremendous natural forces at his disposal and becoming the victim of his own achievements.”

― Roberto Assagioli

“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyse a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialisation is for insects.”

― Robert A. Heinlein

“Education would be much more effective if its purpose was to ensure that by the time they leave school every boy and girl should know how much they do not know and be imbued with a lifelong desire to know it.”

― William Haley

Leadership Quotes:

“Leaders are not, as we are often led to think, people who go along with huge crowds following them. Leaders are people who go their own way without caring, or even looking to see, whether anyone is following them. “Leadership qualities” are not the qualities that enable people to attract followers, but those that enable them to do without them. They include, at the very least, courage, endurance, patience, humor, flexibility, resourcefulness, stubbornness, a keen sense of reality, and the ability to keep a cool and clear head, even when things are going badly. True leaders, in short, do not make people into followers, but into other leaders.”

“Whatever an education is, it should make you a unique individual, not a conformist; it should furnish you with an original spirit with which to tackle the big challenges. It should allow you to find values which will be your road map through life; it should make you spiritually rich, a person who loves whatever you are doing, wherever you are, whomever you are with; it should teach you what is important, how to live and how to die.”

“Treat people as if they were what they ought to be, and you help them become what they are capable of becoming.”

“Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.”

― Mark Twain

“The true test of character is not how much we know how to do, but how we behave when we don’t know what to do.”

Growth Mindset Quotes:

“We like to think of our champions and idols as superheroes who were born different from us. We don’t like to think of them as relatively ordinary people who made themselves extraordinary.”

― Carol Dweck

“The competitive advantages the marketplace demands is someone more human, connected, and mature. Someone with passion and energy, capable of seeing things as they are and negotiating multiple priorities as she makes useful decisions without angst. Flexible in the face of change, resilient in the face of confusion. All of these attributes are choices, not talents, and all of them are available to you.”

―  Seth Godin,  Linchpin: Are You Indispensable?

“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement; nothing can be done without hope and confidence.”

― Helen Keller

“Don’t limit yourself. Many people limit themselves to what they think they can do. You can go as far as your mind lets you. What you believe, you can achieve.”

― Mary Kay Ash

“Life is a series of experiences, each one of which makes us bigger, even though sometimes it is hard to realize this. For the world was built to develop character, and we must learn that the setbacks and grieves which we endure help us in our marching onward.”

“You will either step forward into growth, or you will step backward into safety.”

― Abraham Maslow

“After seven experiments with hundreds of children, we had some of the clearest findings I’ve ever seen: Praising children’s intelligence harms their motivation and it harms their performance. How can that be? Don’t children love to be praised? Yes, children love praise. And they especially love to be praised for their intelligence and talent. It really does give them a boost, a special glow—but only for the moment. The minute they hit a snag, their confidence goes out the window and their motivation hits rock bottom. If success means they’re smart, then failure means they’re dumb. That’s the fixed mindset.”

Curiosity Quotes:

“All the world is a laboratory to the inquiring mind.”

― Martin H. Fischer

“Education is what remains after one has forgotten everything he learned in school. It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education. ”

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.”

― Pablo Picasso

“We should not teach children the sciences but give them a taste for them.”

― Jean Jacques Rosseau

“Learning never exhausts the mind.”

― Leonardo Da Vinci

“No matter how he may think himself accomplished, when he sets out to learn a new language, science or the bicycle, he has entered a new realm as truly as if he were a child newly born into the world.”

― Frances Willard

“We learn more by looking for the answer to a question and not finding it than we do from learning the answer itself.”

― Lloyd Alexander

“Sit down before fact as a little child, be prepared to give up every conceived notion, follow humbly wherever and whatever abysses nature leads, or you will learn nothing.”

― Thomas Huxley

“Beware of the man who works hard to learn something, learns it, and finds himself no wiser than before.”

― Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

“Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.”

― Oscar Wilde

“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether this happens at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps on learning not only remains young, but becomes constantly more valuable regardless of physical capacity.”

― Harvey Ullman

“I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.”

“I do not know what I may appear to the world, but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.”

― Isaac Newton

Schooling Quotes:

“Don’t let anyone tell you that standardized tests are not accurate measures. The truth of the matter is they offer a remarkably precise method for gauging the size of the houses near the school where the test was administered.”

― Alfie Kohn

“Just as eating contrary to the inclination is injurious to the health, so study without desire spoils the memory, and it retains nothing that it takes in.”

– Leonardo da Vinci

“There were no sex classes. No friendship classes. No classes on how to navigate a bureaucracy, build an organization, raise money, create a database, buy a house, love a child, spot a scam, talk someone out of suicide, or figure out what was important to me. Not knowing how to do these things is what messes people up in life, not whether they know algebra or can analyze literature.”

– William Upski Wimsatt

“The system manufactures students who are smart and talented and driven, yes, but also anxious, timid, and lost, with little intellectual curiosity and a stunted sense of purpose: trapped in a bubble of privilege, heading meekly in the same direction, great at what they’re doing but with no idea why they’re doing it.”

― William Deresiewicz, Excellent Sheep

“Nothing bothers me more than when people criticize my criticism of school by telling me that schools are not just places to learn maths and spelling, they are places where children learn a vaguely defined thing called socialization. I know. I think schools generally do an effective and terribly damaging job of teaching children to be infantile, dependent, intellectually dishonest, passive and disrespectful to their own developmental capacities.”

– Seymour Papert

“Think of the things killing us as a nation: narcotic drugs, brainless competition, dishonesty, greed, recreational sex, the pornography of violence, gambling, alcohol, and — the worst pornography of all — lives devoted to buying things, accumulation as a philosophy. All of these are addictions of dependent personalities. That is what our brand of schooling must inevitably produce. A large fraction of our total economy has grown up around providing service and counseling to inadequate people, and inadequate people are the main product of government compulsion schools.”

– John Taylor Gatto

“Education itself is a putting off, a postponement; we are told to work hard to get good results. Why? So we can get a good job. What is a good job? One that pays well. Oh. And that’s it? All this suffering, merely so that we can earn a lot of money, which, even if we manage it, will not solve our problems anyway? It’s a tragically limited idea of what life is all about.”

– Tom Hodgkinson

“The whole educational and professional training system is a very elaborate filter, which just weeds out people who are too independent, and who think for themselves, and who don’t know how to be submissive, and so on – because they’re dysfunctional to the institutions.”

– Noam Chomsky

“What is the purpose of industrial education? To fill the young of the species with knowledge and awaken their intelligence? Nothing could be further from the truth. The aim is simply to reduce as many individuals as possible to the same safe level, to breed and train a standardized citizenry, to put down dissent and originality. That is its aim in the United States and that is its aim everywhere else.”

– H. L. Mencken

“The anxiety children feel at constantly being tested, their fear of failure, punishment, and disgrace, severely reduces their ability both to perceive and to remember, and drives them away from the material being studied into strategies for fooling teachers into thinking they know what they really don’t know.”

– John Holt

“What we call education and culture is for the most part nothing but the substitution of reading for experience, of literature for life, of the obsolete fictitious for the contemporary real.”

– George Bernard Shaw

“Education is what survives when what has been learned has been forgotten.”

― B. F. Skinner

“What does education often do? It makes a straight-cut ditch of a free, meandering brook.”

– Henry David Thoreau

“The school system … is the homogenizing hopper into which we toss our integral tots for processing.”

–  Marshall McLuhan

“Our job is obvious: we need to get out of the way, shine a light, and empower a new generation to teach itself and to go further and faster than any generation ever has.”

– Seth Godin

“What rewards and punishments do is induce compliance, and this they do very well indeed. If your objective is to get people to obey an order, to show up on time and do what they’re told, then bribing or threatening them may be sensible strategies. But if your objective is to get long-term quality in the workplace, to help students become careful thinkers and self-directed learners, or to support children in developing good values, then rewards, like punishments, are absolutely useless. In fact, as we are beginning to see, they are worse than useless—they are actually counterproductive.”

“Home-based education is not an experiment. It’s how people learned to function in the world for centuries. And there is no reason to think people today can’t do the same thing. School is the experiment… And that experiment is in trouble.”

– Wendy Priesnitz

“The old system where every child who locked away and set into nonstop, daily cutthroat competition with every other child for silly prizes called grades is broken beyond repair. If it could be fixed it could have been fixed by now.”

“Schools have not necessarily much to do with education… they are mainly institutions of control where certain basic habits must be inculcated in the young. Education is quite different and has little place in school.”

– Winston Churchill

“Much of education today is monumentally ineffective. All too often we are giving young people cut flowers when we should be teaching them to grow their own plants.”

― John W. Gardner

“The object of education is to prepare the young to educate themselves throughout their lives.”

― Robert M. Hutchins

“In a word, learning is decontextualized. We break ideas down into tiny pieces that bear no relation to the whole. We give students a brick of information, followed by another brick, followed by another brick, until they are graduated, at which point we assume they have a house. What they have is a pile of bricks, and they don’t have it for long.”

“Most learning is not the result of instruction. It is rather the result of unhampered participation in a meaningful setting. Most people learn best by being “with it,” yet school makes them identify their personal, cognitive growth with elaborate planning and manipulation.”

― Ivan Illich

“Education: free and compulsory – what a way to learn logic!”

― Frank van Dun

“What we call education and culture is for the most part nothing but the substitution of reading for experience, of literature for life, of the obsolete fictitious for the contemporary real.”

― George Bernard Shaw

“Education, for most people, means trying to lead the child to resemble the typical adult of his society…But for me, education means making creators…You have to make inventors, innovators, not conformists.”

― Jean Piaget

“Artificial learning takes what is simple and natural and turns it into a complex array of objectives, goals, measurements, administrators, supervisors, counselors, and transportation experts. Natural education requires only a guide providing direction, and a learner ready to discover and create goals and values that are personally meaningful.”

― Linda Dobson

Classical Liberal Education:

“We should hunt out the helpful pieces of teaching and the spirited and noble-minded sayings which are capable of immediate practical application–not far far-fetched or archaic expressions or extravagant metaphors and figures of speech–and learn them so well that words become works.”

“The central virtue of a liberal education is that it teaches you how to write, and writing makes you think. Whatever you do in life, the ability to write clearly, cleanly, and reasonably quickly will prove to be an invaluable skill.”

― Fareed Zakaria

“Because of the times we live in, all of us, young and old, do not spend enough time and effort thinking about the meaning of life. We do not look inside ourselves enough to understand our strengths and weaknesses, and we do not look around enough – at the world, in history – to ask the deepest and broadest questions. The solution surely is that, even now, we could all use a little bit more of a liberal education.”

“In a properly automated and educated world, then, machines may prove to be the true humanizing influence. It may be that machines will do the work that makes life possible and that human beings will do all the other things that make life pleasant and worthwhile ”

― Isaac Asimov,

“It could be said that a liberal education has the nature of a bequest, in that it looks upon the student as the potential heir of a cultural birthright, whereas a practical education has the nature of a commodity to be exchanged for position, status, wealth, etc., in the future. A liberal education rests on the assumption that nature and human nature do not change very much or very fast and that one therefore needs to understand the past. The practical educators assume that human society itself is the only significant context, that change is therefore fundamental, constant, and necessary, that the future will be wholly unlike the past, that the past is outmoded, irrelevant, and an encumbrance upon the future — the present being only a time for dividing past from future, for getting ready.

But these definitions, based on division and opposition, are too simple. It is easy, accepting the viewpoint of either side, to find fault with the other. But the wrong is on neither side; it is in their division…

Without the balance of historic value, practical education gives us that most absurd of standards: “relevance,” based upon the suppositional needs of a theoretical future. But liberal education, divorced from practicality, gives something no less absurd: the specialist professor of one or another of the liberal arts, the custodian of an inheritance he has learned much about, but nothing from.”

―  Wendell Berry,  The Unsettling of America

“The liberal arts do not conduct the soul all the way to virtue, but merely set it going in that direction.”

“Practical utility, however, is not the ultimate purpose of a liberal arts education. Its ultimate purpose is to help you learn to reflect in the widest and deepest sense, beyond the requirements of work and career: for the sake of citizenship, for the sake of living well with others, above all, for the sake of building a self that is strong and creative and free.”

Comfort Zone Quotes:

"You haven't failed, until you stop trying" ― Unknown

“Every act of conscious learning requires the willingness to suffer an injury to one’s self-esteem. That is why young children, before they are aware of their own self-importance, learn so easily.”

― Thomas Szasz

“Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism.”

― Dr. David M. Burns

” Always do what you are afraid to do.”

― Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Do or do not. There is no try.”

“Too much credit is given to the end result. The true lesson is in the struggle that takes place between the dream and reality. That struggle is a thing called life!”

― Garth Brooks

“Worry is misuse of the imagination. ”

― Mary Crowley

”Life can only be understood backwards but you have to live it forward. You can only do that by stepping into uncertainty and by trying, within this uncertainty, to create your own islands of security….The new security will be a belief that …if this doesn’t work out you could do something else. You are your own security.”

― Charles Handy

Have you ever been at sea in a dense fog, when it seemed as if a tangible white darkness shut you in and the great ship, tense and anxious, groped her way toward the shore with plummet and sounding-line, and you waited with beating heart for something to happen? I was like that ship before my education began, only I was without compass or sounding line, and no way of knowing how near the harbour was. “Light! Give me light!” was the wordless cry of my soul, and the light of love shone on me in that very hour.

“Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing.”

21st Century Education Quotes:

“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn.”

― Alvin Toffler

“Our rapidly moving, information-based society badly needs people who know how to find facts rather than memorize them, and who know how to cope with change in creative ways. You don’t learn those things in school.”

― Wendy Priesnitz

“Educators – like musicians, journalists, carmakers, and bankers before them – won’t know what hit them. But as sure as change is overtaking every other sector of society, it will overtake education – as well it should. Our cookie-cutter, one-pace-fits-all, test-focused system is not up to the task of teaching the creators of the new Googles.

Call me a utopian but I imagine a new educational ecology where students may take courses from anywhere and instructors may select any students, where courses are collaborative and public, where creativity is nurtured as Google nurtures it, where making mistakes well is valued over sameness and safety, where education continues long past age 21, where tests and degrees matter less than one’s own portfolio of work, where the gift economy may turn anyone with knowledge into teachers, where the skills of research and reasoning and skepticism are valued over the skills of memorization and calculation, and where universities teach an abundance of knowledge to those who want it rather than manage a scarcity of seats in a class.”

― Jeff Jarvis in Hacking Education

“I imagine a school system that recognizes learning is natural, that a love of learning is normal, and that real learning is passionate learning. A school curriculum that values questions above answers…creativity above fact regurgitation…individuality above conformity.. and excellence above standardized performance….. And we must reject all notions of ‘reform’ that serve up more of the same: more testing, more ‘standards’, more uniformity, more conformity, more bureaucracy.”

― Tom Peter, “Re-Imagine”

“‘The future is here. It’s just not widely distributed yet.”

― William Gibson

“The “real world” that parents worry unschooling kids won’t be able to cope with is not the “real world” of the future; it’s one designed to churn out obedient workers and consumers. But times – and the economy — are changing.”

Question Everything:

"Reward and punishment is the lowest form of education." ― Chuang Tzu

“Give me a fruitful error any time, full of seeds, bursting with its own corrections. You can keep your sterile truth for yourself.”

― Vilfredo Pareto

“It is important that students bring a certain ragamuffin, barefoot irreverence to their studies; they are not here to worship what is known, but to question it.”

― Jacob Bronowski

“Believe nothing merely because you have been told it . . . or because it is tradition, or because you yourselves have imagined it. Do not believe what your teacher tells you merely out of respect for the teacher. But whatsoever, after due examination and analysis, you find to be conductive to the good, the benefit, the welfare of all beings – that doctrine believe and cling to, and take it as your guide.”

― Gautama Buddha

“Knowledge that is acquired under compulsion obtains no hold on the mind.”

​“Who questions much, shall learn much, and retain much.”

― Francis Bacon

“There is frequently more to be learned from the unexpected questions of a child than the discourses of men.”

― John Locke

“It is nothing short of a miracle that the modern methods of instruction have not yet entirely strangled the holy curiosity of inquiry; for this delicate little plant, aside from stimulation, stands mainly in need of freedom; without this it goes to wreak and ruin. It is a very grave mistake to think that the enjoyment of seeing and searching can be promoted by means of coercion and a sense of duty.”

Social Change:

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed it is the only thing that ever has.

―  Margaret Mead

“There is no neutral education. Education is either for domestication or for freedom.”

― Joao Coutinho

”Educating the masses was intended only to improve the relationship between the top and the bottom of society. Not for changing the nature of the relationship.”

― John Ralston Paul, “Voltaire’s Bastards”

“The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew and act anew.”

― Abraham Lincoln

“Since every effort in our educational life seems to be directed toward making of the child a being foreign to itself, it must of necessity produce individuals foreign to one another, and in everlasting antagonism with each other.”

― Emma Goldman

“Much that passes for education is not education at all but ritual. The fact is that we are being educated when we know it least.”

― David P. Gardner

“Education is a method whereby one acquires a higher grade of prejudices.”

― Laurence J. Peter

“The great end of education is to discipline rather than to furnish the mind; to train it to the use of its own powers rather than to fill it with the accumulation of others.”

― Tyron Edwards

“Out of the nursery into the college and back to the nursery; there’s your intellectual pattern for the past five centuries or more. School is shortened, discipline relaxed, philosophies, histories, languages dropped, English and spelling gradually gradually neglected, finally almost completely ignored. Life is immediate, the job counts, pleasure lies all about after work. Why learn anything save pressing buttons, pulling switches, fitting nuts and bolts?”

― Kurt Vonnegut

“The society that separates its scholars from its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting by fools.”

– Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War

“Kids don’t remember what you try to teach them. They remember what you are.” ― Jim Henson

“All I am saying can be summed up in two words: Trust Children. Nothing could be more simple, or more difficult. Difficult because to trust children we must first learn to trust ourselves, and most of us were taught as children that we could not be trusted.”

“It is among the commonplaces of education that we often first cut off the living root and then try to replace its natural functions by artificial means. Thus we suppress the child’s curiosity and then when he lacks a natural interest in learning he is offered special coaching for his scholastic difficulties.”

― Alice Miller

“Students get the message about what adults want. When 4th graders in a variety of classrooms were asked what their teachers most wanted them to do, they didn’t say, “Ask thoughtful questions” or “Make responsible decisions” or “Help others.” They said, “Be quiet, don’t fool around, and get our work done on time.”

“If we taught babies to talk as most skills are taught in school, they would memorize lists of sounds in a predetermined order and practice them alone in a closet.”

― Linda Darling-Hammond

“Because schools suffocate children’s hunger to learn, learning appears to be difficult and we assume that children must be externally motivated to do it. As a society, we must own up to the damage we do to our children…in our families and in our schools. We must also be willing to make the sweeping changes in our institutions, public policies and personal lives that are necessary to reverse that harm to our children and to our society.”

“I am beginning to suspect all elaborate and special systems of education. They seem to me to be built upon the supposition that every child is a kind of idiot who must be taught to think. Whereas, if the child is left to himself, he will think more and better, if less showily. Let him go and come freely, let him touch real things and combine his impressions for himself, instead of sitting indoors at a little round table, while a sweet-voiced teacher suggests that he build a stone wall with his wooden blocks, or make a rainbow out of strips of coloured paper, or plant straw trees in bead flower-pots. Such teaching fills the mind with artificial associations that must be got rid of, before the child can develop independent ideas out of actual experience.”

― Anne Sullivan, Helen Keller’s Teacher

“It is among the commonplaces of education that we often first cut off the living root and then try to replace its natural functions by artificial means. Thus we suppress the child’s curiosity and then when he lacks a natural interest in learning he is offered special coaching for his scholastic difficulties.”

― Alice Duer Miller

“Children are born passionately eager to make as much sense as they can of things around them. If we attempt to control, manipulate, or divert this process… the independent scientist in the child disappears.”

“Education is a natural process carried out by the child and is not acquired by listening to words but by experiences in the environment.”

― Dr. Maria Montessori

“Kids who are in school just visit life sometimes and then they have to stop to do homework or go to sleep early or get to school on time. They’re constantly reminded they are preparing for real life. While being isolated from it.”

― Sandra Dodd

“What we want is to see the child in pursuit of knowledge, and not knowledge in pursuit of the child.”

“Don’t limit a child to your own learning, for he was born in another time.”

― Rabindranath Tagore

“Again, the most effective (and least destructive) way to help a child succeed—whether she’s writing or skiing, playing a trumpet or a computer game—is to do everything possible to help her fall in love with what she’s doing, to pay less attention to how successful she was (or is likely to be) and show more interest in the task. That’s just another way of saying that we need to encourage more, judge less, and love always.”

“Every child should have mud pies, grasshoppers, water bugs, tadpoles, frogs, mud turtles, elderberries, wild strawberries, acorns, chestnuts, trees to climb. Brooks to wade, water lilies, woodchucks, bats, bees, butterflies, various animals to pet, hayfields, pine-cones, rocks to roll, sand, snakes, huckleberries and hornets; and any child who has been deprived of these has been deprived of the best part of education.”

― Luther Burbank

Modern Alienation:

“The condition of alienation, of being asleep, of being unconscious, of being out of one’s mind, is the condition of the normal man. Society highly values its normal man. It educates children to lose themselves and to become absurd, and thus to be normal.”

― R.D. Laing

“It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.”

“The function of high school, then, is not so much to communicate knowledge as to oblige children finally to accept the grading system as a measure of their inner excellence. And a function of the self-destructive process in American children is to make them willing to accept not their own, but a variety of other standards, like a grading system, for measuring themselves. It is thus apparent that the way American culture is now integrated it would fall apart if it did not engender feelings of inferiority and worthlessness.”

― Jules Henry

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

“Public education reflects our society’s paternalistic, hierarchical worldview, which exploits children in the same way it takes the earth’s resources for granted.”

“It doesn’t make much difference what you study, so long as you don’t like it.”

― Finley Peter Dunne

“Euripides long ago said, ‘who dares not speak his free thought is a slave.’ I nominated myself as an ‘infidel’ as a challenge to thought for those who are asleep.”

Self-Education Quotes:

“Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.”

― Isaac Asimov

“If we value independence, if we are disturbed by the growing conformity of knowledge, of values, of attitudes, which our present system induces, then we may wish to set up conditions of learning which make for uniqueness, for self-direction, and for self-initiated learning.”

― Carl Rogers

“Actually, all education is self-education. A teacher is only a guide, to point out the way, and no school, no matter how excellent, can give you education. What you receive is like the outlines in a child’s coloring book. You must fill in the colors yourself.”

― Louis L’Amour

“Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.”

“Learning is not the product of teaching. Learning is the product of the activity of learners.”

“Learning is not attained by chance; it must be sought for with ardour and diligence.”

― Abigail Adams

“Never be afraid to try something new. Remember amateurs built the ark, but professionals built the Titanic.”

“Each man must look to himself to teach him the meaning of life. It is not something discovered. It is something molded.”

― Antoine de Saint-Exupery

“Learning is not attained by chance; it must be sought for with ardour and attended to with diligence.”

“All things good to know are difficult to learn.”

― Greek Proverb

“Through the power of self-education you can be anything you want to be or do anything you want to do. Self-education power does not require money, fixed time or fixed life style. Options are extremely flexible. Rewards are unlimited. You can control your destiny.”

“Learning of the highest value extends well beyond measurable dimension. It can’t be fit into any curriculum or evaluated by any test. It is activated by experiences which develop our humanity. It teaches us to be our best selves.”

― Laura Grace Weldon

“The Hunter who chases two rabbits will catch neither.”

― Ancient Proverb

“There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them.”

― Joseph Brodsk

“When you replace “why is this happening to me” with “what is this trying to teach me?” Everything shifts.”

“A smart man makes a mistake, learns from it, and never makes that mistake again. But a wise man finds a smart man and learns from him how to avoid the mistake altogether.”

― Roy H. Williams

“I am concerned that too many people are focused too much on money and not on their greatest wealth, which is their education. If people are prepared to be flexible, keep an open mind and learn, they will grow richer and richer through the changes. If they think money will solve the problems, I am afraid those people will have a rough ride. Intelligence solves problems and produces money. Money without financial intelligence is money soon gone.”

– Robert Kiyosaki

Any More Unconventional Learning Quotes to Add?

Have any favorite learning quotes that you’d like to add to the list? Feel free to add them in the comments.

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You Want to Teach What?

  • Posted February 2, 2022
  • By Emily Boudreau
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  • Moral, Civic, and Ethical Education
  • Teachers and Teaching

Controversial Issues Infographic

Many teachers worry about bringing controversy into the classroom because it could spark conflict between students or result in reproaches from administrators or parents, but addressing and thinking through divisive issues is necessary for children who are learning to live, participate, and empathize with diverse perspectives in a democracy.

University of San Francisco professor  Judy Pace , an alum of Harvard Graduate School of Education, has studied the predicaments and possibilities of tackling charged topics in class. In her recent book, Hard Questions: Learning to Teach Controversial Issues , she explores how preservice programs prepare teachers to include controversial issues in their teaching . 

What Is a Controversial Issue?

Importantly, Pace notes that controversial issues are not the same as controversial topics, which are polarizing subjects that some stakeholders argue should not be taught. Instead, controversial issues “have to do with open questions  that are significant in terms of society or the past on which it is important to explore different perspectives that have legitimate sources of information,” says Pace. “We’re not talking about something like, ‘Do humans contribute to climate change?’ because that’s a settled question.” For example, open questions that introduce controversial issues and promote critical thinking could range from, “Should we lower the voting age?” to “What kinds of reparations should be paid to the descendants of enslaved people?”

Preparing Teachers for Controversy in Classrooms

Of course, generating these kinds of questions and leading students through open and fair discussions requires skilled teachers. To better understand how educators learn to teach controversial issues, Pace conducted a series of interviews with and observations of four teacher educators — instructors who teach people how to be teachers — and 15 preservice teachers in three different countries including the United States, Northern Ireland, and England.  

While the preservice teachers often worried about the risks associated with teaching controversial issues, Pace noted that the teacher educators acknowledged these anxieties and taught specific strategies to help address these concerns, rather than ignoring them. “In these methods courses, [teacher educators] encouraged [preservice] teachers to explore controversial issues using a variety of pedagogical approaches” that contained the risks, says Pace. Preservice teachers, she found, were often able to adapt the strategies they learned to fit their teaching contexts and their own identities as teachers. “I think [contained risk-taking] provides a way forward in this incredibly contentious political climate we’re trying to navigate.”

Controversial issues "have to do with open questions that are significant in terms of society or the past on which it is important to explore different perspectives that have legitimate sources of information. We’re not talking about something like, ‘do humans contribute to climate change?’ because that’s a settled question.”

Here, Pace provides a few instructional resources, strategies, and practices educators can use when teaching controversial issues:

  • Know your students and understand the community.  “I’d hope every teacher from day one would start developing a culture of trust and respect,” says Pace. A supportive environment provides a foundation for a classroom where students feel they can express themselves and explore ideas. Drawing on existing research , Pace recommends teachers use preliminary surveys to get to know where students stand on issues and what issues they care most about to prepare for discussions and know what voices and perspectives to bring into the conversation.
  • Communicate clearly.  Teachers should be transparent about their rationale for teaching a particular issue and explain how they’re approaching it — the goal is not to get students to adopt a particular stance but to get them to think critically. Parents and administrators should also have an awareness of what’s going on. “I think when teachers are transparent about why and how they’re doing this and keep the lines of communication open, that makes people feel less threatened and less likely to jump to conclusions about what’s going on in the classroom,” says Pace.
  • Be thoughtful when selecting issues.  Again, controversial issues are not the same as controversial topics. They should be related to the curriculum, draw from valid information sources, and should be framed as open questions. Additionally, teachers shouldn’t lead with the most charged discussions but gradually build up student capacity for these issues as the year progresses. Resources like Civic Online Reasoning can help.
  • Structured academic controversy , where students take turns understanding different perspectives presented by sources before coming to a compromise or consensus.
  • Town hall meetings , where groups of students present differing viewpoints and then answer questions before reflecting on their own position.
  • Walking debates , where students physically identify whether they agree or disagree with a particular statement before discussing.
  • Leave room to reflect.  Try to leave time, if not at the end of the class at the end of the week, for students to address emotions, reflect, and debrief. Use writing as a vehicle for individual reflection. This is beneficial not just for students but for teachers as well. Teachers should also find colleagues they can process and reflect with. Additionally, be aware of your own limitations, blind spots, or biases. Actively seek out professional development to provide additional support and to build facilitation skills.

More on teaching controversies from Pace's website.  

Additional Resources

  • Teaching Hard Histories
  • Civics in Uncivil Times
  • Harvard Ed Cast: Teaching Across a Political Divide
  • Teaching Controversial Issues (EdSource Podcast)
  • Teaching Controversial Issues When Democracy Is Under Attack (Brookings)

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50 of the Best Quotes About Education

Learn as if you were to live forever.

Educational Quotes feature image

Being an educator is not always the easiest job, but knowing you have made an impact on students’ lives can be so rewarding. Through all of the good times and bad, you continue to persevere and provide education to students of all backgrounds and abilities. We collected 50 of the best quotes about education to celebrate the best parts of teaching, learning, and the impact they have on the world.

Our Favorite Quotes About Education

“education is our passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs only to the people who prepare for it today.” — malcolm x.

Education is our passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs only to the people who prepare for it today.

“Education is one thing no one can take away from you.” — Elin Nordegren

 “Education is one thing no one can take away from you.” —Elin Nordegren

“Education’s purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one.” — Malcolm Forbes

Quotes about education: “Education’s purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one.” —Malcolm Forbes

“The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows.” — Sydney J. Harris

“The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows.” —Sydney J. Harris

“Learning is not attained by chance, it must be sought for with ardor and attended to with diligence.” — Abigail Adams

“Learning is not attained by chance, it must be sought for with ardor and attended to with diligence.” —Abigail Adams

“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” — Benjamin Franklin

“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” —Benjamin Franklin

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” — Nelson Mandela

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” —Nelson Mandela

“The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. … Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education.” — Martin Luther King Jr.

The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. ... Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education.

“A person who won’t read has no advantage over a person who can’t read.” — Mark Twain

 “A person who won’t read has no advantage over a person who can’t read.” —Mark Twain

“Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire.” — Unknown

Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire.

“Education is the key to unlock a golden door of freedom.” — George Washington Carver

Quotes about education: “Education is the key to unlock a golden door of freedom.” —George Washington Carver

“The great aim of education is not knowledge but action.” — Herbert Spencer

“The great aim of education is not knowledge but action.” —Herbert Spencer

“The goal of education is the advancement of knowledge and the dissemination of truth.” — John F. Kennedy

Quotes about education: “The goal of education is the advancement of knowledge and the dissemination of truth.” —John F. Kennedy

“The great difficulty in education is to get experience out of ideas.” — George Santayana

“The great difficulty in education is to get experience out of ideas.” —George Santayana

“The roots of education … are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.” — Aristotle

The roots of education ... are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.

“Education must not simply teach work, it must teach Life.” — W.E.B Du Bois

“Education must not simply teach work, it must teach Life.” —W.E.B Du Bois

“Education then, beyond all other devices of human origin, is the great equalizer of the conditions of men, the balance-wheel of the social machinery.” — Horace Mann

“Education then, beyond all other devices of human origin, is the great equalizer of the conditions of men, the balance-wheel of the social machinery.” —Horace Mann

“I believe that education is all about being excited about something. Seeing passion and enthusiasm helps push an educational message.” — Steve Irwin

Quotes about education: “I believe that education is all about being excited about something. Seeing passion and enthusiasm helps push an educational message.” —Steve Irwin

“Everyone who remembers his own education remembers teachers, not methods and techniques. The teacher is the heart of the educational system.” — Sidney Hook

“Everyone who remembers his own education remembers teachers, not methods and techniques. The teacher is the heart of the educational system.” —Sidney Hook

“All real education is the architecture of the soul.” — William Bennett

“All real education is the architecture of the soul.” —William Bennett

“Education is the key which will unlock the door of opportunity for you.” — Gordon B. Hinckley

Education is the key which will unlock the door of opportunity for you.

“I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.” — Maya Angelou

Quotes about education: “I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.” —Maya Angelou

“Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.” — Bill Nye

“Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.” —Bill Nye

“The highest result of education is tolerance.” — Helen Keller

“The highest result of education is tolerance.” —Helen Keller

“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.” — Aristotle

Quotes about education: “Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.” —Aristotle

“To teach is to learn twice.” — Joseph Joubert

“To teach is to learn twice.” —Joseph Joubert

“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.” — Plutarch

“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.” —Plutarch

“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” — Benjamin Franklin

“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” —Benjamin Franklin

“Education breeds confidence. Confidence breeds hope. Hope breeds peace.” — Confucius

Quotes about education: “Education breeds confidence. Confidence breeds hope. Hope breeds peace.” —Confucius 

“The art of teaching is the art of assisting discovery.” — Mark Van Doren

“The art of teaching is the art of assisting discovery.” —Mark Van Doren

“Children must be taught how to think, not what to think.” — Margaret Mead

Quotes about education: “Children must be taught how to think, not what to think.” —Margaret Mead

“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” — Henry Ford

Quotes about education: “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” —Henry Ford

“A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.” — Henry Brooks Adams

“A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.” —Henry Brooks Adams

“They may forget what you said but they will never forget how you made them feel.” — Carl W. Buehner

They may forget what you said but they will never forget how you made them feel.

“A good teacher must be able to put himself in the place of those who find learning hard.” — Eliphas Levi

“A good teacher must be able to put himself in the place of those who find learning hard.” —Eliphas Levi

“One child, one teacher, one book, and one pen can change the world.” — Malala Yousafzai

One child, one teacher, one book, and one pen can change the world.

“Teachers are the one and only people who save nations.” — Mustafa Kemal Atatürk

“Teachers are the one and only people who save nations.” —Mustafa Kemal Atatürk

“Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.” — Isaac Asimov

Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.

“Real education must ultimately be limited to one who INSISTS on knowing, the rest is mere sheep-herding.” — Ezra Pound

Real education must ultimately be limited to one who INSISTS on knowing, the rest is mere sheep-herding.- Quotes About Education

“Education is for improving the lives of others and for leaving your community and world better than you found it.” — Marian Wright Edelman

Education is for improving the lives of others and for leaving your community and world better than you found it.

“It is only the ignorant who despise education.” — Publilius Syrus

It is only the ignorant who despise education.

“A writer should get as much education as possible, but just going to school is not enough; if it were, all owners of doctorates would be inspired writers.” — Gwendolyn Brooks

A writer should get as much education as possible, but just going to school is not enough; if it were, all owners of doctorates would be inspired writers.

“I do not want art for a few, any more than education for a few, or freedom for a few.” — William Morris

I do not want art for a few, any more than education for a few, or freedom for a few.- Quotes About Education

“Real education should educate us out of self into something far finer; into a selflessness which links us with all humanity.” — Nancy Astor

Real education should educate us out of self into something far finer; into a selflessness which links us with all humanity.

“It makes little difference how many university courses or degrees a person may own. If he cannot use words to move an idea from one point to another, his education is incomplete.” — Norman Cousins

It makes little difference how many university courses or degrees a person may own. If he cannot use words to move an idea from one point to another, his education is incomplete.

“The child who desires education will be bettered by it; the child who dislikes it disgraced.” — John Ruskin

The child who desires education will be bettered by it; the child who dislikes it disgraced.- Quotes About Education

“Education is our only political safety. Outside of this ark all is deluge.” — Horace Mann

Education is our only political safety. Outside of this ark all is deluge.

“Education is learning what you didn’t even know you didn’t know.” — Daniel J. Boorstin

Education is learning what you didn't even know you didn't know.

“Instruction ends in the schoolroom, but education ends only with life. A child is given to the universe to be educated.” — Frederick William Robertson

Instruction ends in the schoolroom, but education ends only with life. A child is given to the universe to be educated.- Quotes About Education

“Education is a better safeguard of liberty than a standing army. If we retrench the wages of the schoolmaster, we must raise those of the recruiting sergeant.” — Edward Everett

Education is a better safeguard of liberty than a standing army. If we retrench the wages of the schoolmaster, we must raise those of the recruiting sergeant.

Like these quotes about education? Check out these team-building quotes for classrooms and schools .

Come share your favorite motivational quotes about education in the we are teachers helpline group on facebook .

Broaden your wisdom with these 50 quotes about education from celebrities, philosophers, artists, and other influential figures.

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From slavery to socialism, new legislation restricts what teachers can discuss

Terry Gross square 2017

Terry Gross

controversial education quotes

A third-grade teacher conducts class in Rye, N.Y. Researcher Jeffrey Sachs says that since January 2021, 35 states have introduced legislation limiting topics that schools can teach. Mary Altaffer/AP hide caption

A third-grade teacher conducts class in Rye, N.Y. Researcher Jeffrey Sachs says that since January 2021, 35 states have introduced legislation limiting topics that schools can teach.

Across the U.S., educators are being censored for broaching controversial topics. Since January 2021, researcher Jeffrey Sachs says, 35 states have introduced 137 bills limiting what schools can teach with regard to race, American history, politics, sexual orientation and gender identity.

Sachs has been tracking this legislation for PEN America , a writers organization dedicated to free speech. He says the recent flurry of legislation has created a "minefield" for educators trying to figure out how to teach topics such as slavery, Jim Crow laws or the Holocaust. One proposed law in South Carolina, for instance, prohibits teachers from discussing any topic that creates "discomfort, guilt or anguish" on the basis of political belief.

"That means that a teacher would have to be very, very careful about how they discuss something like, let's say, fascism or racism or antisemitism," Sachs says. "These are political beliefs, and it means that teachers are going to have to second-guess whether they can describe that political belief in as forthright and honest a way as we wish for fear of falling afoul of this bill."

Why education was a top voter priority this election

Why education was a top voter priority this election

Critical race theory , an academic approach that examines how race and racism function in American institutions, has inspired a backlash in conservative circles across the United States. In one of his first acts in office, Glenn Youngkin , the Republican governor of Virginia, established a hotline to allow parents or members of the community to report critical race theory in the classroom. Meanwhile, in New Hampshire, a conservative mom's group is offering a $500 bounty to catch teachers who break a state law prohibiting certain teachings about racism and sexism.

"I think it must be a very terrifying time to be an educator at any level in higher ed or in K-12," Sachs says.

More than half of teachers are looking for the exits, a poll says

More than half of teachers are looking for the exits, a poll says

"You have, unfortunately, the kinds of daily stressors that we've all become used to because of COVID," he says. "And now on top of that, these educators are trying to negotiate outraged parents and media pundits. ... When you listen to what educators are saying, they're burned out, and many of them, I think, will head for the exits."

Interview highlights

On how some of the proposed bills would be impossible to comply with

Some of the bills — I would say many now — include a provision that says something to the effect of: Teachers cannot be compelled to discuss a controversial contemporary issue, but if they do, they must do so evenhandedly and without any kind of favoritism. However, many of those same bills also would require teachers to denounce, in the strongest possible terms, ideas like Marxism or socialism.

For instance, a bill in Indiana that is currently under consideration would require, among other things, that in the run-up to any general election in the state, students must be taught "socialism, Marxism, communism, totalitarianism or similar political systems are incompatible with and in conflict with the principles of freedom upon which the United States was founded." And it goes on to say as such, "socialism, Marxism, communism, totalitarianism or similar political systems are detrimental to the people of the United States."

A school principal's blunt warning: We can't pretend the pandemic is over

A school principal's blunt warning: We can't pretend the pandemic is over

The issue there, among many others, is that it's a bill requiring students to be exposed to this litany of claims about different ideologies. And it also requires that in doing so, teachers cannot show favoritism or bias in any one direction. In other words, it's a bill that can't possibly actually work. Teachers are being pulled in two different directions, and the consequence is going to be a kind of self-censorship.

Another Indiana bill ... prohibits teachers from including in their class any "anti-American ideologies." Now that term is never defined, and again, it's not that teachers can't endorse or promote anti-American ideologies — they're just simply forbidden from even discussing them.

On bills that address sexuality, gender and LGBTQ issues

It differs bill to bill. But again, many do include language prohibiting teachers from discussing concepts like gender fluidity. It prohibits them from discussing "nontraditional gender identities" and in many cases forbid[s] teachers from discussing controversial events that would presumably include, in many cases, ones like gay marriage or LGBTQ rights.

How Critical Race Theory Went From Harvard Law To Fox News

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How critical race theory went from harvard law to fox news.

We see as well many bills requiring teachers to report to parents if their children are asking questions about their gender identity, and in many cases as well — for instance, in a Florida bill — that prohibit teachers from "encouraging any conversation about sex and sexuality."

So it really puts teachers in an impossible situation. In a contemporary high school or middle school, even earlier in elementary school, these sorts of topics arise. And in particular, it would put LGBTQ teachers in a really difficult situation where they're forced, essentially, to disguise their identity or the status of their relationships in order to fend off running afoul of these bills.

On how these laws are similar to what's going on in authoritarian countries

It often gets dismissively described as "woke ideas," and more broadly, I think we would just describe these ideas that we're talking about as socially liberal ideas. And unfortunately, what we're seeing is in countries like Russia, China, in Turkey, in Hungary, we are seeing these regimes targeting educational institutions and other sites of cultural production like museums or the media, [as] an attempt to drive these ideas out — to signal that to be a "real" Russian or to be a "true" Hungarian, one must be straight, one must be socially conservative. These efforts underway in these regimes, that are either authoritarian or unfortunately trending in that direction, all signal the kind of political energy that leaders believe they can get by attacking these ideas.

On a new law that addresses the concept of systemic racism

There's a law currently on the books in North Dakota that was passed last November after just five days of consideration that has me up at night. This is a law that attempts to prohibit critical race theory in K-12 schools, and I just want to reemphasize here this is not a law that prohibits people from endorsing or promoting critical race theory. It's a law that forbids them from even including critical race theory in the classroom. And the way that that law defines critical race theory is what has me so concerned: ... "critical race theory, which is defined as the theory that racism is not merely the product of learned individual bias or prejudice, but that racism is systemically embedded in American society and the American legal system to facilitate racial inequality." In other words, the law now is saying that whenever a teacher talks about racism, they may only describe it as a product of an individual's own biases or prejudices. They cannot describe it — even when the facts command them to — as something more endemic or embedded within American society. It's a way essentially of preventing teachers, I think, from being honest about a lot of the uglier sides of American history and contemporary society.

Whenever you discuss slavery, your teacher would have to essentially say, "These slaveholders were racist." The system that they were in, the laws that supported them, the economy that made that business profitable, you'd have to separate those institutional features and describe slavery purely as a product of individual bias, which does violence to the topic. It fails to educate students, and I think might discourage students from thinking critically about contemporary institutions and identifying whether or not they also might be guilty of systemic racism.

On how the idea for these restrictive teaching bills first came about

The origins here ... go back to that summer of 2020. There's a researcher there named Christopher Rufo, who was then with the Discovery Institute in Seattle. This is in a conservative educational institute centered around the promotion of intelligent design. And Christopher Rufo wrote a series of articles for an online website called City Journal . And in his City Journal articles, he detailed what he described as indoctrination in K-12 schools or in employee training programs in businesses or state agencies, programs that he said were training people to become critical race theorists.

Trump Expands Ban On Racial Sensitivity Training To Federal Contractors

Trump Expands Ban On Racial Sensitivity Training To Federal Contractors

Those articles caught the attention of Tucker Carlson, the Fox News host, and Rufo appeared on his program in early September of 2020. The very next day, he received a phone call from Mark Meadows, then chief of staff for the Trump administration. Apparently, Trump had watched the program that evening. He'd seen what Rufo had to say, and within a matter of days, Rufo was in conversation with the Trump administration on some sort of legislative or executive response. The product of that conversation was Trump's executive order in late September, where he prohibited any state agency from discussing certain ideas as part of employee training or [training for] a state contractor that wishes to do business with the federal government.

Amy Salit and Thea Chaloner produced and edited the audio of this interview. Bridget Bentz, Molly Seavy-Nesper and Lauren Migaki adapted it for the web.

clock This article was published more than  2 years ago

Public education is facing a crisis of epic proportions

How politics and the pandemic put schools in the line of fire.

controversial education quotes

A previous version of this story incorrectly said that 39 percent of American children were on track in math. That is the percentage performing below grade level.

Test scores are down, and violence is up . Parents are screaming at school boards , and children are crying on the couches of social workers. Anger is rising. Patience is falling.

For public schools, the numbers are all going in the wrong direction. Enrollment is down. Absenteeism is up. There aren’t enough teachers, substitutes or bus drivers. Each phase of the pandemic brings new logistics to manage, and Republicans are planning political campaigns this year aimed squarely at failings of public schools.

Public education is facing a crisis unlike anything in decades, and it reaches into almost everything that educators do: from teaching math, to counseling anxious children, to managing the building.

Political battles are now a central feature of education, leaving school boards, educators and students in the crosshairs of culture warriors. Schools are on the defensive about their pandemic decision-making, their curriculums, their policies regarding race and racial equity and even the contents of their libraries. Republicans — who see education as a winning political issue — are pressing their case for more “parental control,” or the right to second-guess educators’ choices. Meanwhile, an energized school choice movement has capitalized on the pandemic to promote alternatives to traditional public schools.

“The temperature is way up to a boiling point,” said Nat Malkus, senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative-leaning think tank. “If it isn’t a crisis now, you never get to crisis.”

Experts reach for comparisons. The best they can find is the earthquake following Brown v. Board of Education , when the Supreme Court ordered districts to desegregate and White parents fled from their cities’ schools. That was decades ago.

Today, the cascading problems are felt acutely by the administrators, teachers and students who walk the hallways of public schools across the country. Many say they feel unprecedented levels of stress in their daily lives.

Remote learning, the toll of illness and death, and disruptions to a dependable routine have left students academically behind — particularly students of color and those from poor families. Behavior problems ranging from inability to focus in class all the way to deadly gun violence have gripped campuses. Many students and teachers say they are emotionally drained, and experts predict schools will be struggling with the fallout for years to come.

Teresa Rennie, an eighth-grade math and science teacher in Philadelphia, said in 11 years of teaching, she has never referred this many children to counseling.

“So many students are needy. They have deficits academically. They have deficits socially,” she said. Rennie said that she’s drained, too. “I get 45 minutes of a prep most days, and a lot of times during that time I’m helping a student with an assignment, or a child is crying and I need to comfort them and get them the help they need. Or there’s a problem between two students that I need to work with. There’s just not enough time.”

Many wonder: How deep is the damage?

Learning lost

At the start of the pandemic, experts predicted that students forced into remote school would pay an academic price. They were right.

“The learning losses have been significant thus far and frankly I’m worried that we haven’t stopped sinking,” said Dan Goldhaber, an education researcher at the American Institutes for Research.

Some of the best data come from the nationally administered assessment called i-Ready, which tests students three times a year in reading and math, allowing researchers to compare performance of millions of students against what would be expected absent the pandemic. It found significant declines, especially among the youngest students and particularly in math.

The low point was fall 2020, when all students were coming off a spring of chaotic, universal remote classes. By fall 2021 there were some improvements, but even then, academic performance remained below historic norms.

Take third grade, a pivotal year for learning and one that predicts success going forward. In fall 2021, 38 percent of third-graders were below grade level in reading, compared with 31 percent historically. In math, 39 percent of students were below grade level, vs. 29 percent historically.

Damage was most severe for students from the lowest-income families, who were already performing at lower levels.

A McKinsey & Co. study found schools with majority-Black populations were five months behind pre-pandemic levels, compared with majority-White schools, which were two months behind. Emma Dorn, a researcher at McKinsey, describes a “K-shaped” recovery, where kids from wealthier families are rebounding and those in low-income homes continue to decline.

“Some students are recovering and doing just fine. Other people are not,” she said. “I’m particularly worried there may be a whole cohort of students who are disengaged altogether from the education system.”

A hunt for teachers, and bus drivers

Schools, short-staffed on a good day, had little margin for error as the omicron variant of the coronavirus swept over the country this winter and sidelined many teachers. With a severe shortage of substitutes, teachers had to cover other classes during their planning periods, pushing prep work to the evenings. San Francisco schools were so strapped that the superintendent returned to the classroom on four days this school year to cover middle school math and science classes. Classes were sometimes left unmonitored or combined with others into large groups of unglorified study halls.

“The pandemic made an already dire reality even more devastating,” said Becky Pringle, president of the National Education Association, referring to the shortages.

In 2016, there were 1.06 people hired for every job listing. That figure has steadily dropped, reaching 0.59 hires for each opening last year, Bureau of Labor Statistics data show. In 2013, there were 557,320 substitute teachers, the BLS reported. In 2020, the number had fallen to 415,510. Virtually every district cites a need for more subs.

It’s led to burnout as teachers try to fill in the gaps.

“The overall feelings of teachers right now are ones of just being exhausted, beaten down and defeated, and just out of gas. Expectations have been piled on educators, even before the pandemic, but nothing is ever removed,” said Jennifer Schlicht, a high school teacher in Olathe, Kan., outside Kansas City.

Research shows the gaps in the number of available educators are most acute in areas including special education and educators who teach English language learners, as well as substitutes. And all school year, districts have been short on bus drivers , who have been doubling up routes, and forcing late school starts and sometimes cancellations for lack of transportation.

Many educators predict that fed-up teachers will probably quit, exacerbating the problem. And they say political attacks add to the burnout. Teachers are under scrutiny over lesson plans, and critics have gone after teachers unions, which for much of the pandemic demanded remote learning.

“It’s just created an environment that people don’t want to be part of anymore,” said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director of AASA, The School Superintendents Association. “People want to take care of kids, not to be accused and punished and criticized.”

Falling enrollment

Traditional public schools educate the vast majority of American children, but enrollment has fallen, a worrisome trend that could have lasting repercussions. Enrollment in traditional public schools fell to less than 49.4 million students in fall 2020 , a 2.7 percent drop from a year earlier .

National data for the current school year is not yet available. But if the trend continues, that will mean less money for public schools as federal and state funding are both contingent on the number of students enrolled. For now, schools have an infusion of federal rescue money that must be spent by 2024.

Some students have shifted to private or charter schools. A rising number , especially Black families , opted for home schooling. And many young children who should have been enrolling in kindergarten delayed school altogether. The question has been: will these students come back?

Some may not. Preliminary data for 19 states compiled by Nat Malkus, of the American Enterprise Institute, found seven states where enrollment dropped in fall 2020 and then dropped even further in 2021. His data show 12 states that saw declines in 2020 but some rebounding in 2021 — though not one of them was back to 2019 enrollment levels.

Joshua Goodman, associate professor of education and economics at Boston University, studied enrollment in Michigan schools and found high-income, White families moved to private schools to get in-person school. Far more common, though, were lower-income Black families shifting to home schooling or other remote options because they were uncomfortable with the health risks of in person.

“Schools were damned if they did, and damned if they didn’t,” Goodman said.

At the same time, charter schools, which are privately run but publicly funded, saw enrollment increase by 7 percent, or nearly 240,000 students, according to the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools. There’s also been a surge in home schooling. Private schools saw enrollment drop slightly in 2020-21 but then rebound this academic year, for a net growth of 1.7 percent over two years, according to the National Association of Independent Schools, which represents 1,600 U.S. schools.

Absenteeism on the rise

Even if students are enrolled, they won’t get much schooling if they don’t show up.

Last school year, the number of students who were chronically absent — meaning they have missed more than 10 percent of school days — nearly doubled from before the pandemic, according to data from a variety of states and districts studied by EveryDay Labs, a company that works with districts to improve attendance.

This school year, the numbers got even worse.

In Connecticut, for instance, the number of chronically absent students soared from 12 percent in 2019-20 to 20 percent the next year to 24 percent this year, said Emily Bailard, chief executive of the company. In Oakland, Calif., they went from 17.3 percent pre-pandemic to 19.8 percent last school year to 43 percent this year. In Pittsburgh, chronic absences stayed where they were last school year at about 25 percent, then shot up to 45 percent this year.

“We all expected that this year would look much better,” Bailard said. One explanation for the rise may be that schools did not keep careful track of remote attendance last year and the numbers understated the absences then, she said.

The numbers were the worst for the most vulnerable students. This school year in Connecticut, for instance, 24 percent of all students were chronically absent, but the figure topped 30 percent for English-learners, students with disabilities and those poor enough to qualify for free lunch. Among students experiencing homelessness, 56 percent were chronically absent.

Fights and guns

Schools are open for in-person learning almost everywhere, but students returned emotionally unsettled and unable to conform to normally accepted behavior. At its most benign, teachers are seeing kids who cannot focus in class, can’t stop looking at their phones, and can’t figure out how to interact with other students in all the normal ways. Many teachers say they seem younger than normal.

Amy Johnson, a veteran teacher in rural Randolph, Vt., said her fifth-graders had so much trouble being together that the school brought in a behavioral specialist to work with them three hours each week.

“My students are not acclimated to being in the same room together,” she said. “They don’t listen to each other. They cannot interact with each other in productive ways. When I’m teaching I might have three or five kids yelling at me all at the same time.”

That loss of interpersonal skills has also led to more fighting in hallways and after school. Teachers and principals say many incidents escalate from small disputes because students lack the habit of remaining calm. Many say the social isolation wrought during remote school left them with lower capacity to manage human conflict.

Just last week, a high-schooler in Los Angeles was accused of stabbing another student in a school hallway, police on the big island of Hawaii arrested seven students after an argument escalated into a fight, and a Baltimore County, Md., school resource officer was injured after intervening in a fight during the transition between classes.

There’s also been a steep rise in gun violence. In 2021, there were at least 42 acts of gun violence on K-12 campuses during regular hours, the most during any year since at least 1999, according to a Washington Post database . The most striking of 2021 incidents was the shooting in Oxford, Mich., that killed four. There have been already at least three shootings in 2022.

Back to school has brought guns, fighting and acting out

The Center for Homeland Defense and Security, which maintains its own database of K-12 school shootings using a different methodology, totaled nine active shooter incidents in schools in 2021, in addition to 240 other incidents of gunfire on school grounds. So far in 2022, it has recorded 12 incidents. The previous high, in 2019, was 119 total incidents.

David Riedman, lead researcher on the K-12 School Shooting Database, points to four shootings on Jan. 19 alone, including at Anacostia High School in D.C., where gunshots struck the front door of the school as a teen sprinted onto the campus, fleeing a gunman.

Seeing opportunity

Fueling the pressure on public schools is an ascendant school-choice movement that promotes taxpayer subsidies for students to attend private and religious schools, as well as publicly funded charter schools, which are privately run. Advocates of these programs have seen the public system’s woes as an excellent opportunity to push their priorities.

EdChoice, a group that promotes these programs, tallies seven states that created new school choice programs last year. Some are voucher-type programs where students take some of their tax dollars with them to private schools. Others offer tax credits for donating to nonprofit organizations, which give scholarships for school expenses. Another 15 states expanded existing programs, EdChoice says.

The troubles traditional schools have had managing the pandemic has been key to the lobbying, said Michael McShane, director of national research for EdChoice. “That is absolutely an argument that school choice advocates make, for sure.”

If those new programs wind up moving more students from public to private systems, that could further weaken traditional schools, even as they continue to educate the vast majority of students.

Kevin G. Welner, director of the National Education Policy Center at the University of Colorado, who opposes school choice programs, sees the surge of interest as the culmination of years of work to undermine public education. He is both impressed by the organization and horrified by the results.

“I wish that organizations supporting public education had the level of funding and coordination that I’ve seen in these groups dedicated to its privatization,” he said.

A final complication: Politics

Rarely has education been such a polarizing political topic.

Republicans, fresh off Glenn Youngkin’s victory in the Virginia governor’s race, have concluded that key to victory is a push for parental control and “parents rights.” That’s a nod to two separate topics.

First, they are capitalizing on parent frustrations over pandemic policies, including school closures and mandatory mask policies. The mask debate, which raged at the start of the school year, got new life this month after Youngkin ordered Virginia schools to allow students to attend without face coverings.

The notion of parental control also extends to race, and objections over how American history is taught. Many Republicans also object to school districts’ work aimed at racial equity in their systems, a basket of policies they have dubbed critical race theory. Critics have balked at changes in admissions to elite school in the name of racial diversity, as was done in Fairfax, Va. , and San Francisco ; discussion of White privilege in class ; and use of the New York Times’s “1619 Project,” which suggests slavery and racism are at the core of American history.

“Everything has been politicized,” said Domenech, of AASA. “You’re beside yourself saying, ‘How did we ever get to this point?’”

Part of the challenge going forward is that the pandemic is not over. Each time it seems to be easing, it returns with a variant vengeance, forcing schools to make politically and educationally sensitive decisions about the balance between safety and normalcy all over again.

At the same time, many of the problems facing public schools feed on one another. Students who are absent will probably fall behind in learning, and those who fall behind are likely to act out.

A similar backlash exists regarding race. For years, schools have been under pressure to address racism in their systems and to teach it in their curriculums, pressure that intensified after the murder of George Floyd in 2020. Many districts responded, and that opened them up to countervailing pressures from those who find schools overly focused on race.

Some high-profile boosters of public education are optimistic that schools can move past this moment. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona last week promised, “It will get better.” Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, said, “If we can rebuild community-education relations, if we can rebuild trust, public education will not only survive but has a real chance to thrive.”

But the path back is steep, and if history is a guide, the wealthiest schools will come through reasonably well, while those serving low-income communities will struggle. Steve Matthews, superintendent of the 6,900-student Novi Community School District in Michigan, just northwest of Detroit, said his district will probably face a tougher road back than wealthier nearby districts that are, for instance, able to pay teachers more.

“Resource issues. Trust issues. De-professionalization of teaching is making it harder to recruit teachers,” he said. “A big part of me believes schools are in a long-term crisis.”

Valerie Strauss contributed to this report.

The pandemic’s impact on education

The latest: Updated coronavirus booster shots are now available for children as young as 5 . To date, more than 10.5 million children have lost one or both parents or caregivers during the coronavirus pandemic.

In the classroom: Amid a teacher shortage, states desperate to fill teaching jobs have relaxed job requirements as staffing crises rise in many schools . American students’ test scores have even plummeted to levels unseen for decades. One D.C. school is using COVID relief funds to target students on the verge of failure .

Higher education: College and university enrollment is nowhere near pandemic level, experts worry. ACT and SAT testing have rebounded modestly since the massive disruptions early in the coronavirus pandemic, and many colleges are also easing mask rules .

DMV news: Most of Prince George’s students are scoring below grade level on district tests. D.C. Public School’s new reading curriculum is designed to help improve literacy among the city’s youngest readers.

controversial education quotes

19 unforgettable quotes from political leaders on a day that will live in infamy

"i am in the house chambers. we have been instructed to lie down on the floor and put on our gas masks.".

Supporters of President Donald Trump gathered outside the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. Insurgents stormed the building ...

Supporters of President Donald Trump gathered outside the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. Insurgents stormed the building as lawmakers tried to certify the 2020 election.

On perhaps the most fraught day in modern American politics, the internet became the centre of chaos, emotion and expression. Twitter, for the first time ever, deleted some of President Donald Trump’s tweets on Wednesday evening, including one of a video in which he called the election "stolen" and referred to those involved in a mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol as "special people." Twitter has now locked Trump’s Twitter account for at least 12 hours .

As insurgents forced their way into the building yesterday afternoon—shutting down proceedings to certify the election of Joe Biden, thrusting members of Congress into lockdown, and leaving one woman dead—responses poured out. Leaders across the political spectrum condemned the action, with Democrats and many Republicans directly blaming Trump for inciting his supporters to commit violence.

"Today, the United States Capitol—the world’s greatest symbol of self-government—was ransacked while the leader of the free world cowered behind his keyboard—tweeting against his vice president for fulfilling the duties of his oath to the Constitution,” said Republican Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska, in a statement released on Twitter . “Lies have consequences. This violence was the inevitable and ugly outcome of the president’s addiction to constantly stoking division.”

Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts made a similar declaration : “The violence at the Capitol today was an attempted coup and act of insurrection egged on by a corrupt President to overthrow our democracy.”

As Capitol Police and eventually the National Guard worked to get the situation under control on the ground, the subject of semantics—how we describe the people who overwhelmed security and stormed the U.S. Capitol building en masse for the first time in more than 200 years—became a hot debate online. Many press outlets, and Twitter itself, initially referred to members of the mob as “protesters,” before others pointed out that the more appropriate term was “insurgents” or “insurrectors.” Twitter updated its descriptor from “protesters” to “mob;” the Washington Post made “mob” their official word of choice . NPR is referring to them as “pro-Trump extremists” and calling their actions an “insurrection,” as is National Geographic.

"Those who performed these reprehensible acts cannot be called protesters," said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. "No, these were rioters and insurrectionists, goons and thugs, domestic terrorists."

Statements about semantics, the violence, and the disintegration of democracy flew from elected officials, on Twitter, and towards each other. Here are some of the most unforgettable quotes so far:

1. “To storm the Capitol, to smash windows, to occupy offices, and to threaten the safety of duly elected officials is not protest. It is insurrection. The world is watching—and like so many other Americans, I am shocked and saddened that our nation, so long a beacon of light, hope and democracy, has come to such a dark moment.” - President-elect Joe Biden

2. “These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long. Go home with love & in peace. Remember this day forever!” - President Donald Trump

3. “This is what you’ve gotten, guys.” - Senator Mitt Romney (R-Utah), shouting at his Republican colleagues who had tried to delegitimise the election, as chaos and mayhem broke out in the Capitol.

4. “I am in the House Chambers. We have been instructed to lie down on the floor and put on our gas masks. Chamber security and Capitol Police have their guns drawn as protesters bang on the front door of the chamber. This is not a protest. This is an attack on America.” - Representative Dan Kilgee, (D-Mich.)

5. “Disgraceful scenes in U.S. Congress. The United States stands for democracy around the world and it is now vital that there should be a peaceful and orderly transfer of power.” - Boris Johnson, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

6. “I saw the confederate flag there. What will we do? How will we confront this shame?” - Senator Cory Booker, (D-N.J.)

7. “This is how election results are disputed in a banana republic...I am appalled by the reckless behaviour of some political leaders since the election and by the lack of respect shown today for our institutions, our traditions, and our law enforcement.” - Former President George W. Bush

8. “This is a coup attempt.” - Representative Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.)

9. “We’re in! We’re in! We’re in! We’re in! Derrick Evans is in the Capitol!” - Derrick Evans , a newly elected Republican member of the West Virginia House of Delegates, who was among the insurgents.

10. “My colleagues, nothing before us proves illegality anywhere near the massive scale—the massive scale—that would have tipped the entire election.…The voters, the courts and the states have all spoken. They’ve all spoken. If we overrule them, it would damage our republic forever.” - Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)

11. “Enemies of democracy will be happy to see these unbelievable pictures from #WashingtonDC. Riotous words turn into violent acts—on the steps of the Reichstag, and now in the #Capitol. The disdain for democratic institutions is devastating.” - Heiko Maas, foreign minister of Germany

12. "[Trump's] use of the Presidency to destroy trust in our election and to poison our respect for fellow citizens has been enabled by pseudo political leaders whose names will live in infamy as profiles in cowardice" - Former Secretary of Defence James Mattis

13. “I am drawing up Articles of Impeachment. Donald J. Trump should be impeached by the House of Representatives & removed from office by the United States Senate. We can’t allow him to remain in office, it’s a matter of preserving our Republic and we need to fulfill our oath.” - Representative Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.)

14. “Donald Trump is responsible for today's coup at the Capitol and the attack on our government and democracy. He is a direct threat to our country. He needs to be impeached, removed from office, and barred from ever holding office again.” - Representative Ed Markey (D-Mass.)

15. “This is a day that will live in infamy. The very people who believe they are protecting our democracy have succeeded in destroying it.” - Representative Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio)

16. “Electoral college ballots rescued from the Senate floor. If our capable floor staff hadn’t grabbed them, they would have been burned by the mob.” - Senator Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), tweeting a photo of the salvaged ballots.

17. “While people in Palestine & in many other places in the world are struggling to achieve democracy, there are those in the US who are actively sabotaging theirs. Despots everywhere thrive on repression, oppression, & violence.” - Hanan Ashwari, former member of the Palestine Liberation Organisation Executive Committee

18. “The fabric of our democracy and the principles of our republic are under attack by the President. Enough is enough. President Trump should resign or be removed from office by his Cabinet, or by the Congress.” - Gov. Phil Scott of Vermont

19 . "We can now add January 6, 2021 to that very short list of dates in American history that will live forever in infamy...The final, terrible, indelible legacy of the 45th president of the United States — undoubtedly our worst." - Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.)

President Donald Trump signs a presidential memorandum to "minimize unnecessary regulatory burdens" on October 19, 2018. ...

  • Donald Trump
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  • North America
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  • Washington, D.C.

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How Americans really feel about the teaching of controversial topics in schools

by Nina Raffio, University of Southern California

How Americans really feel about the teaching of controversial topics in schools

While Americans overwhelmingly agree on the fundamental value of public education, a new study by researchers at USC reveals deep partisan divides on sensitive topics like LGBTQ+ inclusion and racial justice in K-12 curricula.

Drawing from a nationally representative survey of more than 3,900 U.S. adults, the study offers a more nuanced picture of public opinion than the heated debates dominating headlines. The research also provides insights for policymakers and educators navigating the complexities of public education in an increasingly polarized America.

"We were surprised and hopeful to find such strong bipartisan support for public education and its purpose," said Anna Saavedra, co-author of the study, research scientist and co-director at the Center for Applied Research in Education at the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences.

"That said, there are major partisan differences in beliefs about what children should be learning in public schools , particularly regarding topics related to LGBTQ and race. Local districts have the challenge of reconciling these differences in the coming years," said Saavedra, who is also the director of research for the USC EdPolicy Hub based at the USC Rossier School of Education.

The researchers conducted an internet-based survey from September to October, targeting a nationally representative sample of American households drawn from the USC Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research's Understanding America Study.

The survey reflected a diverse range of political affiliations, with 40% identifying as Democrat or leaning Democrat, 34% as Republican or leaning Republican, and 27% as independent or belonging to other political parties . The sample included 1,763 households with at least one K-12 child living in the home, and 2,142 households without children currently in the home.

The survey asked participants about the purposes of education, parental control over classroom content and potentially contested topics in K-12 curricula, including LGBTQ inclusion and discussions about race.

How Americans really feel about the teaching of controversial topics in schools

Despite the current political climate , the survey revealed surprising areas of agreement among Americans regarding education.

For example, Americans across the political spectrum overwhelmingly agree on the importance of a free, public education for every child; its core functions of teaching basic literacy, numeracy and civics; and positioning children to have a financially secure future.

The researchers also discovered that 58% of Democrats and 54% of Republicans believe protecting democracy is a very important goal of education, while 36% of adults with other affiliations agree. The survey also showed widespread agreement that parents should play an important role in their children's education.

"In an election year, when the partisan stakes seem so high, we were heartened to find such high levels of agreement around core purposes of education, including both teaching the basics and also strengthening our fragile democracy," said Morgan Polikoff, co-author of the study and associate professor of education at USC Rossier.

Unsurprisingly, the majority of respondents were in favor of elementary students discussing kindness and its significance (90%) and teaching about standing up for others (88%). More than half (54%) are okay with teachers assigning a book depicting a romance between a boy and a girl (54%).

Americans remain split on classroom conversations

Divides were deepest on LGBTQ topics in schools. Among Democrats, 80-86% support high school students learning about such topics, while less than 40% of Republicans approve. Support wanes for teaching the topics to elementary students among Democrats (40%-50%), and only 10% approval from Republicans.

How Americans really feel about the teaching of controversial topics in schools

"Our survey highlights the deep divisions about not just what children should be learning in school, but also when. Policymakers need to really think about these nuances if they are going to craft policies that reflect what Americans really want," Polikoff said.

At the high school level, most people (65%) support discussing various kinds of families. Additionally, 64% approve of discussing how anyone in America can marry the person they love, no matter their gender, and 61% approve of teachers displaying photos of their same-sex spouses on their desks.

The researchers also found that more than half of adults support discussing race-related topics in high school classrooms. While Democrats support elementary school children learning about slavery, civil rights and race-based inequality, Republicans do not.

Other findings included:

  • Fewer than half of Republicans approve of high school students learning about current race-related issues, such as the use of race in college admissions (47%), how discriminatory policies like unfair housing and unequal access to health care have harmed minorities (41%) and how criminal justice policies affect people of color relative to white Americans (40%).
  • Topics closely linked to the experiences of minority racial backgrounds tend to garner less support. For example, the scenario least favored by Republicans (36%) involves a math project where students analyze national data on the frequency of students of different races being sent to the principal's office.
  • While nearly 60% of all respondents agree that children should learn about historical racism, even if it makes them feel guilty, there is a stark divide along party lines. Democrats largely support this approach (81%), while only 33% of Republicans agree.

"We hope our study results will provide renewed bipartisan enthusiasm to work together to improve public education, and with some concrete tools to do so," Saavedra said.

Provided by University of Southern California

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Peoples Quotes

The Best Controversial Quotes About Life, Society & All

Explore the best philosophical and controversial quotes about life, society, politics, happiness, book, education and religion.

Controversial Quotes About Life

“People who always want to be at convenient places won’t make a change at controversial places .” Martin Luther King Jr.
One must shy away from questionable undertakings, even when they bear a high-sounding name. Albert Einstein
The world has always been uncertain. This is the nature of the world. Pierre Nanterme
Verbosity leads to unclear, inarticulate things. George W. Bush
When I was growing up, my parents were almost involved in various volunteer things. My dad was head of Planned Parenthood. And it was very controversial to be involved with that. Bill Gates
Like religion, politics, and family planning, cereal is not a topic to be brought up in public. It’s too controversial. Erma Bombeck
Beware lest you lose the substance by grasping at the shadow. ~Aesop
We are all but recent leaves on the same old tree of life and if this life has adapted itself to new functions and conditions, it uses the same old basic principles over and over again. There is no real difference between the grass and the man who mows it. ~ Albert Szent-Györgyi
Sometimes it’s necessary to go a long distance out of the way in order to come back a short distance correctly. ~Edward Albee

Controversial Quotes About Society

We are more often treacherous through weakness than through calculation. ~François VI de la Rochefoucault
Controversial disputes are a part of democratic culture. _Angela Merkel
If you think you’re free, there’s no escape possible. ~Ram Dass
You can’t wake a person who is pretending to be asleep. ~Navajo proverb

Also Read: 120 Famous Quotes About Freedom & Liberty

Controversial Quotes About Happiness

Gazing at the stars will not save you from the abyss at your feet. ~Dr. Idel Dreimer
Just as the old, looking back, idealize the past, so the young, looking forward, idealize the future. Illusion is the stuff of memory — and is at the heart of hope. ~Dr. Idel Dreimer
You never know what is enough, until you know what is more than enough. ~William Blake
We must remember that nothing in this world really belongs to us. At best, we are merely borrowers. ~Christopher Isherwood
No matter where you go or what you do, you live your entire life within the confines of your head. ~Terry Josephson

Controversial Quotes About Religion

Only that in you which is me can hear what I’m saying. ~Baba Ram Dass
It requires a great deal of faith for a man to be cured by his own placebos. ~John L. McClenahan

Controversial Quotes About Education

Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop. ~Lewis Carroll
t is questionable if all the mechanical inventions yet made have lightened the day’s toil of any human being. _John Stuart Gill
When the student is ready, the master appears. ~Buddhist proverb
To learn something new, take the path that you took yesterday. ~John Burroughs

Also Read: 100+ Best Mindfulness Quotes To Inspire You

Controversial Quotes About Politics

Ninety-eight per cent of the things that come out of my mouth are intended to be harmless or even charming. They’re not ever intended to be offensive or controversial. Megan Fox
A man with one watch knows what time it is; a man with two watches is never quite sure. ~Author unknown
Believe those who are seeking the truth; doubt those who find it. ~André Gide
There’s more to the truth than just the facts. ~Author unknown
If an individual wants to be a leader and isn’t controversial, that means he never stood for anything. _Richard M. Nixon
Symbols have a trick of stealing the show away from the thing they stand for. ~Henry Stanley Haskins,

Philosophical Quotes

I tell you everything that is really nothing, and nothing of what is everything, do not be fooled by what I am saying. Please listen carefully and try to hear what I am not saying. ~Charles C. Finn
Philosophy is life’s dry-nurse, who can take care of us — but not suckle us. ~Søren Kierkegaard
Think like a man of action, act like a man of thought. ~Henri Louis Bergson
Don’t miss the donut by looking through the hole. ~Author unknown
Life has the name of life, but in reality it is death. ~Heraclitus
Whatever I take, I take too much or too little; I do not take the exact amount. The exact amount is no use to me. ~Antonio Porchia,

Controversial Book Quotes

I am not afraid that the book will be controversial, I’m afraid it will not be controversial. Flannery O’Connor
I’m not a lawyer, but I do know this: we need to protect our ability to tell controversial stories. Robert Redford
Losing an illusion makes you wiser than finding a truth. ~Ludwig Börne
Wars and elections are both too big and too small to matter in the long run. The daily work — that goes on, it adds up. ~Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams

Murshid

I’m Murshid Akram, a introvert who love reading and sharing positive vibes through quotes and sayings. I believe with love and compassion we can make this world a better place.

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At a stanford forum, taking a closer look at controversies over curriculum.

Photo of the event's faculty panel

America’s culture wars are playing out in the classroom, with near-daily headlines about attacks on school curriculum. Just about every subject has come under political fire, from math and reading to American history and gender studies.

Dozens of states have recently acted to limit how race and issues of racism can be discussed in schools. Efforts to reform math face backlash from both the right and the left. The so-called “reading wars” pit advocates of different approaches to teaching literacy against one another. On the heels of Florida’s 2022 “Don’t Say Gay” law, lawmakers across the country are pushing bills to limit public schools from addressing sexual orientation or gender identity. Book banning has surged to a level the American Library Association calls “unprecedented.”

Photo of Kahdeidra Monét Martin during town-hall dialogue

Kahdeidra Monét Martin, a postdoctoral scholar at the GSE, poses a question to panelists about the politicization of language in debates over curriculum. (Photo: Ryan Zhang)

To dig more deeply into these controversies and more, Stanford students, faculty, and community members gathered for “Contentious Curriculum,” a two-part forum led by the Graduate School of Education (GSE) on March 7 and 8. The event, held at the Center for Education Research at Stanford, featured talks by GSE faculty and a town-hall dialogue about the past, present, and possible future of conflicts over curriculum. 

Mitchell Stevens , a sociologist and professor at the GSE, organized the event along with Jennifer Wolf , a senior lecturer and director of undergraduate programs at the GSE; Peter Williamson , an associate professor and former faculty director for the Stanford Teacher Education Program ; and GSE doctoral student Abigail Miller.

“GSE faculty are frequently called upon to write and review curriculum. We advise education officials. We train future teachers,” said Stevens. “It seemed incumbent on us to take these current curricular conflicts seriously – and to provide support for one another, as education professionals who are often at the front lines.”

Conditions for controversy

Conflicts over curriculum are nothing new, dating back at least a century to what’s commonly referred to as the “Scopes Monkey Trial,” a 1925 case contesting the legality of teaching evolution in science classes in Tennessee schools. What makes school curriculum such a flashpoint for controversy? 

For one thing, said Stevens, the curriculum represents what’s considered “official” knowledge – and it can’t contain everything. 

“Every single curricular decision is an act of exclusion,” he said. “Some stories, some facts, some concepts will be made central, even compulsory. Many others will be excluded.” The need to limit curriculum content, even if only to accommodate the time constraints of the school year, creates conditions ripe for conflict, he said. 

Another factor is the lack of a centralized authority determining what U.S. schools teach, said Stevens. There are more than 16,000 school districts in the United States, each charged with making their own decisions about curriculum. “The sheer scale and distributed character of American K-12 education means there are a lot of places where conflict can happen,” he said.

The religious nature of the United States – and its religious plurality – also contributes to the emergence of these conflicts, Stevens said. A 2018 survey  found that 40 percent of Americans felt the Christian Bible doesn't have enough influence on American culture. “But another quarter say the Bible has too much influence on American culture,” he said. “So [we] have strong beliefs about the importance of certain Biblical texts on both sides.”

Some conflict can be attributed to the fact that schools and families are both legally responsible for children, he said. Ideally, parents’ and teachers’ ideas of their children’s best interests coincide – but that’s not always the case. What’s more, Americans have historically tended to be more distrustful of public authorities than their counterparts in other countries, Stevens said. “To the extent that families and schools share responsibility for the tasks of raising children, you have a built-in condition for conflict.”

Mike Hines presenting

GSE Assistant Professor Michael Hines said that while historically marginalized groups have gained more of a place in the curriculum, it has been in ways that leave “the fundamental assumptions of the grand narrative of American history in place.” (Photo: Ryan Zhang)

Competing visions for the future

Michael Hines , an assistant professor at the GSE who teaches courses on the history of education in the United States and the history of African American education, spoke on the enduring politicization of the American classroom and curriculum. 

The public school system has long served, he said, as “the mechanism through which societies reproduce themselves”– a role that makes schools a place where competing visions for the future are created and contested. He pointed to one example of schools becoming a battleground for competing visions: the Freedmen’s schools, built in the aftermath of the Civil War to educate formerly enslaved adults and children in the American South.

“The freed people saw education as a tool to protect their freedom and to secure the political and economic equality that would make that status meaningful,” he said. “White Southerners saw those same schools and curricula as a means of limiting and forestalling Black aspirations, and tying formerly enslaved people to a continued role as exploited labor. And white Northerners saw the schools as an opportunity to fill the roles of their various missionary societies and to prove themselves as Christian philanthropists – a goal that ultimately had little to do with supporting Black freedom.”

Curricular controversies largely revolve around perceived threats to the dominant narrative of American history, he said – which might lead to a “bargain” in which minoritized groups gain more of a place in the curriculum, “but only in ways that largely leave the fundamental assumptions of the grand narrative of American history in place.” Key figures or events might be added to textbooks, often physically separated in the text itself – addressed in color-coded boxes or a list of supplemental readings, he noted – “a clear indication that they’re not part of the central story.” 

Debates over curriculum tend to focus on the content of what’s taught – who is represented, and the values and beliefs that are conveyed. Alfredo Artiles , the Lee L. Jacks Professor of Education at the GSE, called for expanding the debate to consider who gets access to the content deemed “worthy.” 

“We classify folks, and then we decide they need certain things by nature of their condition,” said Artiles, whose work focuses on the intersection of disability with areas such as race, gender, language, and social class.

Despite significant progress in addressing the needs of students with disabilities, “we need to follow the classifications and the consequences,” Artiles said. “The assumptions we make in categorizing students is that [students with disabilities] require specialized interventions, and that we should be deploying very distinctive curricular differentiations to them.” 

Patricia Bromley , an associate professor at both the GSE and the Doerr School of Sustainability, shared findings from her research into history, civics, and social studies textbooks from around the world dating back to the 1800s.

Most textbook content is not contested, she said; changes observed over time are primarily driven by an evolution in the culture more broadly. “When that shifts,” she said, “we have uncontested changes.” 

Textbooks also appear to be less subject to change than other kinds of curricula. “They're somewhat insulated from politics in a way that school boards are not,” she said, because of the time-consuming and costly nature of the textbook production system. 

Photo of Priya Satia during town-hall dialogue

“It's empowering for each generation that has to engage in this struggle, because that is where the education is actually happening,” said Priya Satia, a professor of history at Stanford, during the town-hall dialogue. (Photo: Ryan Zhang)

The agency of teachers

In a case study on book banning, Wolf and Williamson walked participants through the events following a Tennessee school board’s 10-1 decision to remove the Pulitzer Prize-winning book Maus from the eighth-grade social studies curriculum last year.

“About 12 days [after the decision], the local paper, the Tennessee Holler , broke the story,” said Wolf. “They had to push hard to get the minutes from the school board meeting. But they broke the story, and then it took off on social media.” The book became so popular after the controversy that it quickly topped best-seller lists and sold out nationwide, prompting a new print run. Meanwhile, a Tennessee pastor in the same county responded by livestreaming a book burning on YouTube, destroying copies of Maus and other books deemed objectionable. 

With conflicts playing out at the district level and beyond, the panelists spoke to the role and agency of teachers themselves. 

“Teachers sit at the heart of this,” said Hines, a former middle-school teacher whose 2022 book, A Worthy Piece of Work , tells the story of a teacher whose groundbreaking Black history curriculum was adopted by the Chicago Public Schools in the 1940s. “No matter what curriculum comes down the pike, teachers are teachers. My mom, who was a fifth-grade math teacher, always told me: ‘I just close my door and teach.’ ”

Stevens hoped the two-night forum provided “some tools for making sense of the ubiquity of these conflicts in American life” and sparked further discussion, he said. “As educators, scholars, and teachers of teachers, it’s important for the GSE to keep these conversations going.”

This forum was supported by the McCoy Family Center for Ethics in Society; GSE programs in Policy, Organization and Leadership Studies (POLS) and International and Comparative Education (ICE), the Stanford Teacher Education Program (STEP); the Center for Comparative Studies of Race & Ethnicity; and the Stanford Education and Humanities Workshop.

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Peter DeWitt's

Finding common ground.

A former K-5 public school principal turned author, presenter, and leadership coach, DeWitt provides insights and advice for education leaders. He can be found at www.petermdewitt.com . Read more from this blog .

5 Reasons Why Education Leaders Avoid Controversial Topics

controversial education quotes

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“The Hallmark of an open mind is separating your ideas from your identity. If you define yourself by your opinions, questioning them is a threat to your integrity. If you see yourself as a curious person or a lifelong learner, changing your mind is a moment of growth .” — Adam Grant.

It’s not a secret that banning books and conversations has been a minefield in the world of education. In a world overflowing with diverse opinions and beliefs, why do we often find ourselves tiptoeing around controversial topics? Strangely enough, I was recently working in a state where banning conversations seems to be a reality, and yet on the last day of our time together, educators within the room wanted to talk about race, social-emotional learning, and some other topics that have been deemed controversial in that state. The tiptoeing we find ourselves doing is often a result of a complex dance of political views, emotional factors, and cultural nuances. The group that I recently worked with inspired me to think about the intersection between what we think we can talk about and often what we want to talk about.

Banning doesn’t work. Finding common ground does.

Although, I am sure there are more than the ones outlined below, I wanted to focus on five reasons that people are often nervous about engaging in controversial topics. They are:

The Fear of Social Backlash

One of the reasons people avoid discussing controversial topics is the fear of social backlash. I get it. I once wrote this blog focusing on why I don’t enter into X (formerly known as Twitter) debates. The fear of backlash is particularly evident in environments where there’s a strong emphasis on maintaining harmony and consensus. In school leadership these days, voicing an opinion that goes against the grain can be daunting— and may be a career killer. Leaders might fear the loss of respect or support from their colleagues or school community, leading to a preference for safer, less contentious subjects.

In coaching sessions and workshops, I am often asked how to engage in topics like social-emotional learning when it seems to be such a hot button issue. One suggestion is to make it about student engagement and less about the words “social-emotional learning.” The other, and much more reasonable suggestion is to ask the person with the issue with those words to give us their understanding of what they believe social-emotional learning means.

The Comfort of Echo Chambers

In an age where digital platforms where people can share ideas and learn from one another, many find comfort in their own echo chambers. I certainly have been guilty of this when it comes to social media. These are spaces where one’s beliefs are echoed back without challenge. Venturing out of these zones into the territory of controversial topics can be jarring and uncomfortable. For full disclosure, though, I do enjoy these conversations when I can see the face of those I am talking to. A Seat at the Table has been a great venue where I have learned a lot. Controversial conversations challenge our cognitive and implicit biases and force us to confront the possibility that our viewpoints might not be correct.

The Complexity of Issues

Controversial topics are often complex, with layers of nuance that can be difficult to navigate. Believe it or not, I am not just talking about race, gender, politics, and social-emotional learning. In schools, topics like de-implementation—the process of identifying and abandoning practices that are not evidence-based—can be particularly thorny. In the case of de-implementation , I often find that people want to abandon strategies and initiatives they believe are forced on them, but they rarely ever want to engage in discussions about strategies and initiatives they control.

The Risk of Miscommunication

In conversations about sensitive subjects, there’s always the risk of miscommunication, and more likely than not, miscommunication takes place, and then recommunicating takes place over and over again. The potential for misunderstanding can turn a well-intentioned discussion into a heated argument. This risk is exacerbated in online interactions where we can’t see the people we are communicating with in real time and often receive messages based on how we are feeling and not necessarily on what they meant.

Emotional Exhaustion

For full disclosure, engaging in discussions about controversial topics can be tiring. I find that they often touch on our deeply held beliefs and values, sometimes leading to emotional responses. In reality, they should lead to rational discourse where we learn from one another. For many, especially those in positions of leadership, this emotional toll can be a reason to stay away from the topics altogether. The energy required to navigate these discussions thoughtfully and empathetically is significant.

Understanding why people avoid controversial topics is crucial, especially in fields like educational leadership where challenging conversations are often necessary for growth and progress. Recognizing the fears and complexities involved allows for a more empathetic approach to these discussions. It’s about creating safe spaces where differing opinions can be expressed respectfully and where challenging the status quo isn’t seen as a threat but as an opportunity for learning and development.

In the end, the aim shouldn’t be to force every controversial topic into the open but to create a psychologically safe space where these discussions can happen in a constructive and meaningful way. As we navigate conversations that make us uncomfortable, we need to remember that the most profound learning often happens at the edges of our comfort zones.

The opinions expressed in Peter DeWitt’s Finding Common Ground are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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The survey revealed surprising areas of agreement among Americans regarding education, including support for a free, public education for every child, and teaching basic literacy, numeracy and civics. (Photo/iStock)

How Americans really feel about the teaching of controversial topics in schools

Americans are united on core principles like the importance of public education and parental involvement, but diverge on the details, a new USC study suggests.

While Americans overwhelmingly agree on the fundamental value of public education, a new study by researchers at USC reveals deep partisan divides on sensitive topics like LGBTQ+ inclusion and racial justice in K-12 curricula.

Drawing from a nationally representative survey of more than 3,900 U.S. adults, the study offers a more nuanced picture of public opinion than the heated debates dominating headlines. The research also provides insights for policymakers and educators navigating the complexities of public education in an increasingly polarized America.

“We were surprised and hopeful to find such strong bipartisan support for public education and its purpose,” said Anna Saavedra , co-author of the study, research scientist and co-director at the Center for Applied Research in Education at the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences.

“That said, there are major partisan differences in beliefs about what children should be learning in public schools, particularly regarding topics related to LGBTQ and race. Local districts have the challenge of reconciling these differences in the coming years,” said Saavedra, who is also the director of research for the USC EdPolicy Hub based at the USC Rossier School of Education.

The researchers conducted an internet-based survey from September to October, targeting a nationally representative sample of American households drawn from the USC Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research’s Understanding America Study .

The survey reflected a diverse range of political affiliations, with 40% identifying as Democrat or leaning Democrat, 34% as Republican or leaning Republican, and 27% as independent or belonging to other political parties. The sample included 1,763 households with at least one K-12 child living in the home, and 2,142 households without children currently in the home.

The survey asked participants about the purposes of education, parental control over classroom content and potentially contested topics in K-12 curricula, including LGBTQ inclusion and discussions about race.

Despite the current political climate , the survey revealed surprising areas of agreement among Americans regarding education.

For example, Americans across the political spectrum overwhelmingly agree on the importance of a free, public education for every child; its core functions of teaching basic literacy, numeracy and civics; and positioning children to have a financially secure future.

The researchers also discovered that 58% of Democrats and 54% of Republicans believe protecting democracy is a very important goal of education, while 36% of adults with other affiliations agree. The survey also showed widespread agreement that parents should play an important role in their children’s education.

“In an election year, when the partisan stakes seem so high, we were heartened to find such high levels of agreement around core purposes of education, including both teaching the basics and also strengthening our fragile democracy,” said Morgan Polikoff , co-author of the study and associate professor of education at USC Rossier.

Unsurprisingly, the majority of respondents were in favor of elementary students discussing kindness and its significance (90%) and teaching about standing up for others (88%). More than half (54%) are OK with teachers assigning a book depicting a romance between a boy and a girl (54%).  

Americans remain split on classroom conversations

Divides were deepest on LGBTQ topics in schools. Among Democrats, 80-86% support high school students learning about such topics, while less than 40% of Republicans approve. Support wanes for teaching the topics to elementary students among Democrats (40%-50%), and only 10% approval from Republicans.

“Our survey highlights the deep divisions about not just what children should be learning in school, but also when. Policymakers need to really think about these nuances if they are going to craft policies that reflect what Americans really want,” Polikoff said.

At the high school level, most people (65%) support discussing various kinds of families. Additionally, 64% approve of discussing how anyone in America can marry the person they love, no matter their gender, and 61% approve of teachers displaying photos of their same-sex spouses on their desks.

The researchers also found that more than half of adults support discussing race-related topics in high school classrooms. While Democrats support elementary school children learning about slavery, civil rights and race-based inequality, Republicans do not.

Other findings included:

  • Fewer than half of Republicans approve of high school students learning about current race-related issues, such as the use of race in college admissions (47%), how discriminatory policies like unfair housing and unequal access to health care have harmed minorities (41%) and how criminal justice policies affect people of color relative to white Americans (40%).
  • Topics closely linked to the experiences of minority racial backgrounds tend to garner less support. For example, the scenario least favored by Republicans (36%) involves a math project where students analyze national data on the frequency of students of different races being sent to the principal’s office.
  • While nearly 60% of all respondents agree that children should learn about historical racism, even if it makes them feel guilty, there is a stark divide along party lines. Democrats largely support this approach (81%), while only 33% of Republicans agree.

“We hope our study results will provide renewed bipartisan enthusiasm to work together to improve public education, and with some concrete tools to do so,” Saavedra said.

Read the report online .

Editor’s note: Interviews with Professors Saavedra and Polikoff are available on the USC Dornsife Google Drive .

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43 Best Social Justice Quotes To Inspire Hope & Activism

Quote Graphic: "Power concedes nothing without an organized demand." — Charlene Carruthers

We all know that social justice is important. It’s something we talk about, tweet about, and march for. But what does it really mean? And how can we make sure that we’re living it every day?

In this article, you’ll find some of the best quotes about social justice from people who have dedicated their lives to making the world a more equitable place. We hope they inspire you to do the same.m

P.S. You can read more quotes about justice , quotes about advocacy , and other positive quotes in our most popular quote roundups.

The Best Quotes About Social Justice

Famous quotes.

“I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept.” — Angela Davis

“I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept.” — Angela Davis

“Freedom and justice cannot be parceled out in pieces to suit political convenience. I don’t believe you can stand for freedom for one group of people and deny it to others.” — Coretta Scott King

“Freedom and justice cannot be parceled out in pieces to suit political convenience. I don’t believe you can stand for freedom for one group of people and deny it to others.” — Coretta Scott King

“We are all implicated when we allow other people to be mistreated. An absence of compassion can corrupt the decency of a community, a state, a nation.” — Bryan Stevenson , Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption

“We are all implicated when we allow other people to be mistreated. An absence of compassion can corrupt the decency of a community, a state, a nation.” — Bryan Stevenson, Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption

“I am not interested in picking up crumbs of compassion thrown from the table of someone who considers himself my master. I want the full menu of rights.” — Archbishop Desmond Tutu

“I am not interested in picking up crumbs of compassion thrown from the table of someone who considers himself my master. I want the full menu of rights.” — Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Quotes on Activism & Taking Action

“When we identify where our privilege intersects with somebody else's oppression, we'll find our opportunities to make real change.” — Ijeoma Oluo, So You Want to Talk About Race

“When we identify where our privilege intersects with somebody else's oppression, we'll find our opportunities to make real change.” — Ijeoma Oluo, So You Want to Talk About Race

“We have a right to protest for what is right. That’s all we can do. There are people hurting, there are people suffering, so we have an obligation, a mandate, to do something.” — John Lewis

“We have a right to protest for what is right. That’s all we can do. There are people hurting, there are people suffering, so we have an obligation, a mandate, to do something.” — John Lewis

“When you get these jobs you have been so brilliantly trained for, just remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else. This is not just a grab-bag candy game.” — Toni Morrison

“When you get these jobs you have been so brilliantly trained for, just remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else. This is not just a grab-bag candy game.” — Toni Morrison

“Power concedes nothing without an organized demand” — Charlene Carruthers

“Power concedes nothing without an organized demand” — Charlene Carruthers

“Don't sit around and wait for the perfect opportunity to come along — find something and make it an opportunity.” — Cecile Richards, Make Trouble: Standing Up, Speaking Out, and Finding the Courage to Lead

“I think each village was meant to feel pity for its own sick and poor whom it can help and I doubt if it is the duty of any private person to fix his mind on ills which he cannot help. This may even become an escape from the works of charity we really can do to those we know. God may call any one of us to respond to some far away problem or support those who have been so called. But we are finite and he will not call us everywhere or to support every worthy cause. And real needs are not far from us.” — C.S. Lewis

“Your vocation can be found where your greatest joy meets the world’s greatest need.” ‍ — Frederick Buechner

“There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest.” — Elie Wiesel

“There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest.” — Elie Wiesel

“Our freedoms are vanishing. If you do not get active to take a stand now against all that is wrong while we still can, then maybe one of your children may elect to do so in the future, when it will be far more riskier — and much, much harder.” — Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem

→ Read more quotes about activism

“And I must say tonight that a riot is the language of the unheard. And what is it America has failed to hear? ... It has failed to hear that the promises of freedom and justice have not been met. And it has failed to hear that large segments of white society are more concerned about tranquility and the status quo than about justice and humanity.” — Martin Luther King Jr.

“And I must say tonight that a riot is the language of the unheard. And what is it America has failed to hear? ... It has failed to hear that the promises of freedom and justice have not been met. And it has failed to hear that large segments of white society are more concerned about tranquility and the status quo than about justice and humanity.” — Martin Luther King Jr.

“It may well be that we will have to repent in this generation. Not merely for the vitriolic words and the violent actions of the bad people, but for the appalling silence and indifference of the good people who sit around and say, ‘Wait on time.’” — Martin Luther King Jr. , A Testament of Hope: The Essential Writings and Speeches

“Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.” — Martin Luther King Jr.

→ Read more MLK quotes

bell hooks Quotes on Social Change

“Without justice there can be no love.” — bell hooks

“Without justice there can be no love.” — bell hooks

“There must exist a paradigm, a practical model for social change that includes an understanding of ways to transform consciousness that are linked to efforts to transform structures.” — bell hooks, Killing Rage: Ending Racism

“Justice is possible without equality, I believe, because of compassion and understanding. If I have compassion, then if I have more than you, which is unequal, I will still do the just thing by you.” — bell hooks

“Justice demands integrity. It’s to have a moral universe — not only know what is right or wrong but to put things in perspective, weigh things. Justice is different from violence and retribution; it requires complex accounting.” — bell hooks

“Justice demands integrity. It’s to have a moral universe — not only know what is right or wrong but to put things in perspective, weigh things. Justice is different from violence and retribution; it requires complex accounting.” — bell hooks‍

“The world would be a paradise of peace and justice if global citizens shared a common definition of love which would guide our thoughts and action.” — bell hooks

Quotes For Students

“You have to get over the fear of facing the worst in yourself. You should instead fear unexamined racism. Fear the thought that right now, you could be contributing to the oppression of others and you don't know it. But do not fear those who bring that oppression to light. Do not fear the opportunity to do better.” — Ijeoma Oluo, So You Want to Talk About Race

“You have to get over the fear of facing the worst in yourself. You should instead fear unexamined racism. Fear the thought that right now, you could be contributing to the oppression of others and you don't know it. But do not fear those who bring that oppression to light. Do not fear the opportunity to do better.” — Ijeoma Oluo, So You Want to Talk About Race

“In a society that functions optimally, those who can should naturally want to provide for those who can't. That's how it's designed to work. I truly believe we're here to take care of one another.” — LeVar Burton

“In a society that functions optimally, those who can should naturally want to provide for those who can't. That's how it's designed to work. I truly believe we're here to take care of one another.” — LeVar Burton

“Justice grows out of recognition of ourselves in each other — that my liberty depends on you being free too.” — Barack Obama

“Justice grows out of recognition of ourselves in each other — that my liberty depends on you being free too.” — Barack Obama

Quotes on Social Injustice

“Prisons do not disappear social problems, they disappear human beings. Homelessness, unemployment, drug addiction, mental illness, and illiteracy are only a few of the problems that disappear from public view when the human beings contending with them are relegated to cages.” — Angela Davis

“The death penalty is not about whether people deserve to die for the crimes they commit. The real question of capital punishment in this country is, Do we deserve to kill?” — Bryan Stevenson , Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption

Quotes on Systemic Injustice

“Our problems stem from our acceptance of this filthy, rotten system.” — Dorothy Day

“Our problems stem from our acceptance of this filthy, rotten system.” — Dorothy Day

“Colorful demonstrations and weekend marches are vital but alone are not powerful enough to stop wars. Wars will be stopped only when soldiers refuse to fight, when workers refuse to load weapons onto ships and aircraft, when people boycott the economic outposts of Empire that are strung across the globe.” — Arundhati Roy, Public Power in the Age of Empire

“There is no such thing as nonracist or race-neutral policy. Every policy in every institution in every community in every nation is producing or sustaining either racial inequity or equity between racial groups.” — Ibram X. Kendi, How to Be an Antiracist

On Maintaining Hope in the Face of Injustice

“When asked if I am pessimistic or optimistic about the future, my answer is always the same: If you look at the science about what is happening on earth and aren’t pessimistic, you don’t understand data. But if you meet the people who are working to restore this earth and the lives of the poor, and you aren’t optimistic, you haven’t got a pulse. What I see everywhere in the world are ordinary people willing to confront despair, power, and incalculable odds in order to restore some semblance of grace, justice, and beauty to this world.” — Paul Hawken

“There is always light, if only we're brave enough to see it. If only we are brave enough to be it.” — Amanda Gorman

"I want to be nurturing life when I go down in struggle. I want nurturing life to be my struggle." — Zainab Amadahy

“The reality is this: If we don’t make time to close our eyes, breathe deeply, push beyond the binds we’re in, and visualize a day when they don’t exist, we can never truly be free.” — Akiba Solomon & Kenrya Rankin

→ Read more quotes about hope

On the Injustice of Poverty

“Innovation comes, in science, by the people who are able to pull something apart with such insight and knowledge that they can then innovate, and they can create new — it’s how we make progress. And I think the same is true in the justice sector, that we cannot make progress in creating a more just society, healthier communities, if we allow ourselves to be disconnected from the people who are most vulnerable — from the poor, the neglected, the incarcerated, the condemned. If you’re trying to make policies in the criminal justice space but have never met someone who’s in a jail or prison, you haven’t been to a jail or prison, you’re going to fail.” — Bryan Stevenson

“I think sometimes, when you’re trying to do justice work, when you’re trying to make a difference, when you’re trying to change the world, the thing you need to do is get close enough to people who are falling down, get close enough to people who are suffering, close enough to people who are in pain, who’ve been discarded and disfavored — to get close enough to wrap your arms around them and affirm their humanity and their dignity.” — Bryan Stevenson

“In this increasingly interconnected world, we must understand that what happens to poor people is never divorced from the actions of the powerful. Certainly, people who define themselves as poor may control their own destinies to some extent. But control of lives is related to control of land, systems of production, and the formal political and legal structures in which lives are enmeshed. With time, both wealth and control have become increasingly concentrated in the hands of a few. The opposite trend is desired by those working for social justice.” — Paul Farmer

→ Read more quotes about poverty

More Sayings and Slogans

“Rebellion is the only thing that keeps you alive.” — Marianne Faithful

“Rebellion is the only thing that keeps you alive.” — Marianne Faithful

“The opposite of poverty is not wealth. In too many places, the opposite of poverty is justice.” — Bryan Stevenson

“Public education does not exist for the benefit of students or the benefit of their parents. It exists for the benefit of the social order. We have discovered as a species that it is useful to have an educated population. You do not need to be a student or have a child who is a student to benefit from public education. Every second of every day of your life, you benefit from public education. So let me explain why I like to pay taxes for schools, even though I don't personally have a kid in school: It's because I don't like living in a country with a bunch of stupid people.” — John Green

“I sometimes see people say that social change is impossible. But this is just not true. Social change is INEVITABLE. What isn’t inevitable is the timbre and shape of that social change, which we decide together.” — John Green

“In these days of difficulty, we Americans everywhere must and shall choose the path of social justice…, the path of faith, the path of hope, and the path of love toward our fellow man.” — Franklin D. Roosevelt

“By acting compassionately, by helping to restore justice and to encourage peace, we acknowledge that we are all part of one another.” — Ram Dass

“By acting compassionately, by helping to restore justice and to encourage peace, we acknowledge that we are all part of one another.” — Ram Dass

“Ours is not the struggle of one day, one week, or one year. Ours is not the struggle of one judicial appointment or presidential term. Ours is the struggle of a lifetime, or maybe even many lifetimes, and each one of us in every generation must do our part.” ‍ — John Lewis , Across That Bridge: A Vision for Change and the Future of America

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150 Life Quotes: Hope, Inspiration, & Positivity

Quote Graphic: The opposite of poverty is not wealth; the opposite of poverty is justice. — Bryan Stevenson

97 Best Quotes About Justice To Inspire Positive Change

Quote: Activism is my rent for living on the planet. — Alice Walker

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Controversy Quotes

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Martin Luther King, Jr. quote: The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands...

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

controversial education quotes

Controversy is only dreaded by the advocates of error.

Out of anger comes controversy, out of controversy comes conversation, out of conversation comes action.

Follow the path of the unsafe, independent thinker. Expose your ideas to the danger of controversy. Speak your mind and fear less the label of "crackpot" than the stigma of conformity.

Embrace controversy. It gives you a platform. It is a teacher, a clarifier, and your friend, especially if you are trying to make change.

When a thing ceases to be a subject of controversy, it ceases to be a subject of interest.

People like controversy because that's what sells.

controversial education quotes

Controversy for the sake of controversy is sin. Controversy for the sake of truth is a divine command.

In a controversy, the instant we feel anger, we have already ceased striving for truth and have begun striving for ourselves.

The angriest person in a controversy is the one most liable to be in the wrong.

It is the role of good journalism to take on powerful abusers, and when powerful abusers are taken on, there's always a bad reaction. So we see that controversy, and we believe that is a good thing to engage in.

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands in times of challenge and controversy. The true neighbor will risk his position, his prestige, and even his life for the welfare of others. In dangerous valleys and hazardous pathways, he will lift some bruised and beaten brother to a higher and more noble life.

Most controversies would soon be ended, if those engaged in them would first accurately define their terms, and then adhere to their definitions.

The most savage controversies are about matters as to which there is no good evidence either way.

The dust of controversy is merely the falsehood flying off.

Controversy equalizes fools and wise men in the same way - and the fools know it.

Intellectual controversies tend to be like dog fights without the teeth, in which the barking not the biting does the damage.

It is not he who gains the exact point in dispute who scores most in controversy - but he who has shown the better temper.

A civilization in which there is not a continuous controversy about important issues is on the way to totalitarianism and death

There will be no end to angling controversies for there is no one best way for everyone to fish.

Sometimes its controversy, but we all have our choices that we make.

Why is there such controversy about drug testing? I know plenty of guys who'd be willing to test any drug they can come up with.

The precipitancy of disputation, and the stir and noise of passions that usually attend it, must needs be prejudicial to verity.

There is no learned man but will confess be hath much profited by reading controversies,--his senses awakened, his judgment sharpened, and the truth which he holds firmly established. If then it be profitable for him to read, why should it not at least be tolerable and free for his adversary to write? In logic they teach that contraries laid together, more evidently appear; it follows then, that all controversy being permitted, falsehood will appear more false, and truth the more true; which must needs conduce much to the general confirmation of an implicit truth.

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Famous Quotes & Sayings

Controversial Education Quotes & Sayings

Enjoy reading and share 15 famous quotes about Controversial Education with everyone.

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Top Controversial Education Quotes

Controversial Education Quotes By William J Doherty

A family, like a canoe, must be steered or paddled, or it won't take you where you want to go. — William J Doherty

Controversial Education Quotes By Angelina Jolie

I make it a point not to buy certain magazines, not because I am against tabloids or things like that, but I want to fill my mind with valid issues in the world. — Angelina Jolie

Controversial Education Quotes By Molly Friedenfeld

When two or more hearts unite, anything is possible. — Molly Friedenfeld

Controversial Education Quotes By Jean Francois Paul De Gondi

Most men only commit great crimes because of their scruples about petty ones. — Jean Francois Paul De Gondi

Controversial Education Quotes By Jackie Castle

If he knew, he'd never allow her to do the thing she needed to do most. — Jackie Castle

Controversial Education Quotes By Niccolo Machiavelli

He who innovates will have for his enemies all those who are well off under the existing order of things, and only lukewarm supporters in those who might be better off under the new ... partly from the incredulity of mankind, who will never admit the merit of anything new, until they have seen it proved by the event. — Niccolo Machiavelli

Controversial Education Quotes By Donna Shalala

You can't have a university without having free speech, even though at times it makes us terribly uncomfortable. If students are not going to hear controversial ideas on college campuses, they're not going to hear them in America. I believe it's part of their education. — Donna Shalala

Controversial Education Quotes By Lyndon B. Johnson

First, this law - the National Defense Education Act - ended years and years of debate about one controversial question: 'Shall the Federal Government, with all its massive resources, get directly involved in aiding American education?' The answer this law gave was a loud 'Yes!' - and thus we paved the way for a new era of support for education in America. This law, in fact, helped make possible more than 50 new education laws passed in my administration. — Lyndon B. Johnson

Controversial Education Quotes By Eugenie Scott

Evolution is not controversial in the field of science. It's controversial in the public sphere because public education is highly politicized. — Eugenie Scott

Controversial Education Quotes By Roger Kimball

The truth is that American universities are among the safest and most coddled environments ever devised by man. The idea that one should attend college to be protected from ideas one might find controversial or offensive could only occur to someone who had jettisoned any hope of acquiring an education. — Roger Kimball

Controversial Education Quotes By Johnny Hunt

Sin will do a number on you. — Johnny Hunt

Controversial Education Quotes By Guillermo Del Toro

Normally a period movie has a lot of problems with the graphics. They look modern made. — Guillermo Del Toro

Controversial Education Quotes By Samantha Young

No. Caia's heart thumped angrily. They were not going to treat Lucien like some C-list recruit, whilst they pandered to her, just because they wanted something from her. And she needed Lucien close by. This was all so weird, so fast; she needed his strength beside her. "Yeah, well, while you're at it, ask Madam to arrange a guest suite for Lucien in close location to mine." He frowned. "Together you mean?" Caia flushed. "No, not together. Next to one another." Lucien was beginning to look seriously, uncomfortably, pissed off. "Caia you don't-" "It's not for you, it's for me, so swallow it or choke on it. — Samantha Young

Controversial Education Quotes By George Bernard Shaw

My own education has been entirely controversial: that is why I know what I am writing about; and appear eccentric to dogmatically educated Old School Ties whose heads are stuffed with obsolete shibboleths. — George Bernard Shaw

Controversial Education Quotes By Cat Winters

And all the while Stephen started at me as if I were something magical. Not the ugly way other people sometimes stare at me, like he was meeting someone in a foreign country who spoke his language when no one else could. That's how it's been between us ever since. We understand each other, even when we astound each other. — Cat Winters

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Georgia board upholds firing of Cobb teacher for reading controversial book

Cobb County teacher Katie Rinderle appears at a hearing at the Cobb County Board of Education in Marietta on Thursday, August 10, 2023. Rinderle was fired after reading “My Shadow is Purple,” a book about gender identity, to fifth graders. (Arvin Temkar/arvin.temkar@ajc.com)

Credit: [email protected]

The Georgia Board of Education on Thursday upheld the firing of a Cobb County teacher who read a book that challenges gender norms to fifth graders.

Katie Rinderle was removed from her Due West Elementary classroom almost a year ago after reading students a book called “My Shadow is Purple” by Scott Stuart. Some parents complained to the school’s principal that they were not informed about the content of the book ahead of time. Rinderle maintained throughout a two-day hearing and afterward that the book was about inclusivity. She was fired in August, and filed an appeal the next month.

At their meeting Thursday morning, the state board voted unanimously to affirm the Cobb County School Board’s decision without discussing it.

The state board was obligated to uphold Cobb’s firing if there was “any evidence” to support the district’s decision, according to the state’s decision. In its 21-page review, it found that Cobb’s policies are not “unconstitutionally vague,” as Rinderle and her attorneys alleged, and that her firing was not a “predetermined outcome.”

Georgia law gives either Rinderle or the school district 30 days to appeal the state board’s decision in Cobb County Superior Court. Rinderle will continue to pursue all legal options, one of her attorneys said in a statement to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

“We are not surprised by the decision from the state board. This is why we filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of Ms. Rinderle and other teachers in the state,” said Mike Tafelski, senior supervising attorney for the Southern Poverty Law Center and one of Rinderle’s attorneys. “We are seeing this growing wave of censorship across Georgia and the country, threatening public education and our democracy.”

Rinderle, a current Cobb teacher and the Georgia Association of Educators are suing the district and its leaders for discrimination related to her firing. The 35-page complaint filed last week in U.S. District Court in Atlanta, alleges that the plaintiffs “have been terminated or fear discipline under (Cobb’s) vague censorship policies for actively and openly supporting their LGBTQ students.”

Rinderle is believed to be the first public school teacher in Georgia to face consequences under state laws passed in 2022 that limit what teachers are allowed to discuss in the classroom. She’s also the first to file a federal challenge to the Georgia policies, her attorneys said last week.

“The school board’s decision to fire me undermines students’ freedom to learn and teachers’ ability to teach,” Rinderle said in a recent statement through the Southern Poverty Law Center.

In the months since Rinderle was fired, the Cobb County School District has removed books it has deemed to be sexually explicit from its libraries, spurring debate about what power the district has to make those decisions. Marietta City Schools took similar steps . This year’s legislative session brought with it a series of bills that aim to restrict content available in school libraries, including one that would expose librarians to criminal prosecution.

About the Author

ajc.com

Cassidy Alexander covers K-12 education in Cobb and DeKalb counties for the AJC. She previously covered education for The Daytona Beach News-Journal, covering the school district where she grew up. In 2020, she was named Florida's Outstanding New Journalist of the Year.

IMAGES

  1. Malcolm S. Forbes Quote: “The purpose of education is to replace an

    controversial education quotes

  2. Marcus Tullius Cicero Quote: “The purpose of education is to free the

    controversial education quotes

  3. Lyndon B. Johnson quote: We believe, that is, you and I, that education

    controversial education quotes

  4. John Dewey Quote: “Education is not preparation for life; education is

    controversial education quotes

  5. Isaac Asimov Quote: “Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind

    controversial education quotes

  6. John Dewey Quote: “Education is not preparation for life; education is

    controversial education quotes

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COMMENTS

  1. 30(+1) Thought-Provoking and Controversial Educational Quotes to get

    1. This is the mark of an educated mind: to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle 2. Without education, we are in a horrible and deadly danger of taking educated people seriously. G.K. Chesterton 3. I have never let my schooling interfere with my education. Mark Twain 4. Live as if you were to die tomorrow.

  2. The End of Education Quotes by Neil Postman

    The End of Education Quotes Showing 1-15 of 15 "Educators may bring upon themselves unnecessary travail by taking a tactless and unjustifiable position about the relation between scientific and religious narratives. We see this, of course, in the conflict concerning creation science. Some educators representing, as they think, the conscience ...

  3. 38 Controversial Quotes From History's Most Revered Figures

    By John Kuroski | Edited By Savannah Cox Published November 12, 2016 Updated January 23, 2018 From John Lennon to Ben Franklin to Mahatma Gandhi, these appallingly controversial quotes will leave you utterly speechless. Mahatma Gandhi, on black Africans Nikola Tesla, on Jewish people Wikimedia Commons Martin Luther King Jr., on infidelity

  4. 95 Education Quotes: Inspire Children, Parents, AND Teachers

    Socrates was fed poison for teaching the "wrong things". William of Ockam and Galileo are two great examples that philosophy and science have always been controversial topics (to understate the issue) when education runs counter to the status quo. The line on what is good education seems to keep moving.

  5. 100 Unconventional Quotes About Curiosity, Learning and Education

    "All of the top achievers I know are life-long learners. Looking for new skills, insights, and ideas. If they're not learning, they're not growing and not moving toward excellence." ― Denis Waitley "I think the big mistake in schools is trying to teach children anything, and by using fear as the basic motivation.

  6. You Want to Teach What?

    "I think [contained risk-taking] provides a way forward in this incredibly contentious political climate we're trying to navigate." Controversial issues "have to do with open questions that are significant in terms of society or the past on which it is important to explore different perspectives that have legitimate sources of information.

  7. 50 of the Best Quotes About Education

    "Education is the key to unlock a golden door of freedom." — George Washington Carver "The great aim of education is not knowledge but action." — Herbert Spencer "The goal of education is the advancement of knowledge and the dissemination of truth." — John F. Kennedy "The great difficulty in education is to get experience out of ideas."

  8. The Republic Quotes by Plato

    Like. "The soul takes nothing with her to the next world but her education and her culture. At the beginning of the journey to the next world, one's education and culture can either provide the greatest assistance, or else act as the greatest burden, to the person who has just died.". ― Plato, The Republic of Plato.

  9. Controversy Quotes

    Andrew Jackson I'm very... controversial for some reason. Lil Peep First rule of change is controversy. You can't get away from it for the simple reason all issues are controversial. Change means movement, and movement means friction, and friction means heat, and heat means controversy. Saul Alinsky

  10. 150 Best Malcolm X Quotes

    "Without education, you're not going anywhere in this world." "It is a time for martyrs now, and if I am to be one, it will be for the cause of brotherhood. That's the only thing that can save...

  11. From slavery to socialism, proposed laws would restrict what teachers

    Across the U.S., educators are being censored for broaching controversial topics. Since January 2021, researcher Jeffrey Sachs says, 35 states have introduced 137 bills limiting what schools can ...

  12. Public education is facing a crisis of epic proportions

    Anger is rising. Patience is falling. For public schools, the numbers are all going in the wrong direction. Enrollment is down. Absenteeism is up. There aren't enough teachers, substitutes or ...

  13. 19 unforgettable quotes from political leaders on a day that will live

    Here are some of the most unforgettable quotes so far: 1. "To storm the Capitol, to smash windows, to occupy offices, and to threaten the safety of duly elected officials is not protest. It is insurrection.

  14. Inspirational Quotes about Education

    Inspirational Quotes about Education ... Diogenes, sometimes called Diogenes the Cynic, was a philosopher of the controversial sort. He disagreed with Plato, mocked Alexander the Great, and pulled strange philosophic stunts in public. Despite all that, Diogenes knew the importance of educating the future generations, as they would be the ones ...

  15. 25 quotes that show why education is important

    2. "Education is one thing no one can take away from you." —Elin Nordegren. An educated mind is one of the most valuable resources to have in life. 3. "A simple but powerful reminder of the positive domino effect a good education can have on many aspects of a person's life and outlook.".

  16. Ibram X. Kendi Quotes (Author of How to Be an Antiracist)

    1652 quotes from Ibram X. Kendi: 'The opposite of racist isn't 'not racist.' It is 'anti-racist.' What's the difference? One endorses either the idea of a racial hierarchy as a racist, or racial equality as an anti-racist. One either believes problems are rooted in groups of people, as a racist, or locates the roots of problems in power and policies, as an anti-racist.

  17. How Americans really feel about the teaching of controversial topics in

    Americans remain split on classroom conversations. Divides were deepest on LGBTQ topics in schools. Among Democrats, 80-86% support high school students learning about such topics, while less than ...

  18. The Best Controversial Quotes About Life, Society & All

    Albert Einstein The world has always been uncertain. This is the nature of the world. Pierre Nanterme Verbosity leads to unclear, inarticulate things. George W. Bush When I was growing up, my parents were almost involved in various volunteer things. My dad was head of Planned Parenthood. And it was very controversial to be involved with that.

  19. Up From Slavery: Important Quotes Explained

    Important Quotes Explained. "This experience of a whole race beginning to go to school for the first time, presents on of the most interesting studies that has ever occurred in connection with the development of any race. Few people who were not right in the midst of the scenes can form any exact idea of the intense desire which the people of ...

  20. At a Stanford forum, taking a closer look at controversies over

    Competing visions for the future. Michael Hines, an assistant professor at the GSE who teaches courses on the history of education in the United States and the history of African American education, spoke on the enduring politicization of the American classroom and curriculum.. The public school system has long served, he said, as "the mechanism through which societies reproduce themselves ...

  21. 5 Reasons Why Education Leaders Avoid Controversial Topics

    The Fear of Social Backlash. One of the reasons people avoid discussing controversial topics is the fear of social backlash. I get it. I once wrote this blog focusing on why I don't enter into X ...

  22. Malcolm X Quotes About Education

    Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today. Malcolm X. Life, Inspiring, Education. I have often reflected upon the new vistas that reading has opened to me. I knew right there in prison that reading had changed forever the course of my life. As I see it today, the ability to read awoke inside ...

  23. Controversial school topics: How Americans really feel

    While Americans overwhelmingly agree on the fundamental value of public education, a new study by researchers at USC reveals deep partisan divides on sensitive topics like LGBTQ+ inclusion and racial justice in K-12 curricula. Drawing from a nationally representative survey of more than 3,900 U.S. adults, the study offers a more nuanced picture ...

  24. 43 Best Social Justice Quotes To Inspire Hope & Activism

    bell hooks Quotes on Social Change. "Without justice there can be no love.". — bell hooks. "There must exist a paradigm, a practical model for social change that includes an understanding of ways to transform consciousness that are linked to efforts to transform structures.". — bell hooks, Killing Rage: Ending Racism.

  25. TOP 25 CONTROVERSY QUOTES (of 438)

    Tupac Shakur. Anger, Action, Conversation. 95 Copy quote. Follow the path of the unsafe, independent thinker. Expose your ideas to the danger of controversy. Speak your mind and fear less the label of "crackpot" than the stigma of conformity.

  26. Top 15 Controversial Education Quotes & Sayings

    Top Controversial Education Quotes A family, like a canoe, must be steered or paddled, or it won't take you where you want to go. — William J Doherty I make it a point not to buy certain magazines, not because I am against tabloids or things like that, but I want to fill my mind with valid issues in the world. — Angelina Jolie

  27. Controversy Quotes (99 quotes)

    "Controversial' as we all know, is often a euphemism for 'interesting and intelligent." ― Kevin Smith tags: controversy , diversity , intelligence 210 likes Like "I have discovered with advancing years that few things are entirely black or white, but more often different shades of grey." ― Jeffrey Archer, A Prisoner of Birth tags: controversy

  28. Georgia board upholds firing of Cobb teacher for reading controversial book

    About the Author. Cassidy Alexander covers K-12 education in Cobb and DeKalb counties for the AJC. She previously covered education for The Daytona Beach News-Journal, covering the school district ...