Per Ledin, Kunskapsskolan's managing director for Sweden, argues that it is unfair to judge his company's 32 schools by Kunskapsgymnasiet.Cool! I do pretty much everything on that model and look how productive I am! A little earlier in the story:
"We have a surplus of capacity in Malmö, so we get people coming into our school who can't get into other schools," he said, adding that on average his students get 11 points higher than would be predicted by their socio-economic background.
But when I visited the Malmö school, it was hard to see how. It was so noisy that I thought it must be break time. "Students here, they don't have to do every task if they can show that they know it," a teacher said. "English for example, they can learn from the TV and other places."
Much of the learning at the 32 schools in Sweden run by the company is done alone by students, using an online system, with one-on-one guidance from teachers once a week, interspersed with lectures in classes of up to 60 students.
If students prefer to play cards and chat all day, it's up to them.
SNS, a prominent business-funded thinktank, issued a report last Wednesday that sharply reversed its normal pro-market stance. The entry of private operators into state-funded education, it argued, had increased segregation and may not have improved educational standards at all.All hail the prominent business-funded thinktank that tells the truth.
"The empirical evidence showing that competition is good is not really credible, because they can't distinguish between grade inflation and real gains," Dr Jonas Vlachos, who wrote the report on education, told the Observer.