The Washington Post reprints a column by Stanley Katz here, a professor at Princeton, that laments the role large, private doners—such as Bill Gates—play in setting education policy.
Realistically, no reform will work if teachers are not supporting it. Is Bill Gates going to pay for enforcers to be in every classroom, every minute?
There are some exciting teacher voices on ed reform now. Read this blog by a current high school English teacher called Literacy in Leafstrewn.
There is also a new book out by Penny Kittle called Book Love, in which she describes how to get high school students involved in reading again.
I just get depressed when I think of all the good this private money could do, were it being spent on reforms that really mattered: giving kids e-readers and book allowances on sites like Amazon; funding classroom and school libraries; providing smaller classes; providing decent teacher pay, etc.