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Book Review                                      Online Exclusive

 

Education Questions to be

Answered 

  

by Ronald W. Holmes, AuthorHouse, Bloomington, Ind., 2011, 128 pp., $22.20 softcover

BookEducationQuestions

Ronald W. Holmes regularly contributes columns to the Capital Outlook newspaper that address current education issues confronting our schools. Holmes, who has held various posts in education, has selected 25 of those articles for his book Education Questions to Be Answered.

Issues regarding students, parents, teachers, curriculum and school systems are covered in essays that usually span only two to four pages, yet the brevity in no way diminishes the comprehensiveness of Holmes’ thinking. Each article provides enough background for the reader to understand the importance of the topic, then is followed by concrete ideas that schools can use to improve their situation. Some suggested solutions will require willpower and community support, but there is little offered that is not practical.

Several essays directly speak to the struggles of schools and families to ensure the success of African American students. Topics such as dropout rate, parental involvement, family support and the importance of extracurricular activities are addressed as well as a provocative chapter on the efforts school systems must make to reach the boys in the inner city.

The weakest essays deal with school system leadership. Holmes questions both the experiences necessary and the training required to be a successful superintendent. He strongly supports the process of school accreditation as a method for constantly assessing school efficacy and for prompting school improvement. His first-hand experience in this area adds credibility to his endorsement.

Reviewed by John C. Fagan, retired superintendent, Oak Park, Ill. 

 

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