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Back to School: Why Everyone Deserves A Second Chance at Education Hardcover – September 18, 2012

4.9 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Mike Rose shines a light on institutions that are teaching students, young and old, how to rebuild our economy and put America back to work."
President Bill Clinton

"Mike Rose gets it. We either close the monstrous gap between academic study and skilled trades, or we fall into it. Back to School is a second chance not just for those individuals who need one, but for civilized life as we know it."
Mike Rowe, creator and executive producer of the Discovery Channel’s Dirty Jobs

"At a time when more and more are flocking back to the hallowed halls of the university in search of re-training and more substantial resumes, famed educator and professor Rose (Possible Lives) rethinks the role of college in American social and political life, proffering moving arguments for higher education reform.... Those working in secondary education would be remiss to ignore these crucial lessons."
Publishers Weekly

"Whether the students Rose interviews are attending school for retraining, for the social interaction, or for a second chance at a better life, his prose pulls readers into becoming cheerleaders for them as they struggle to master basic reading and writing skills or learn the complexities of welding."
Kirkus

"Rose's idealism is the best kind: informed, tough-minded, self-aware. Those of us who inhabit lives on the cushier side of the educational boundary should honor, and act upon, his profoundly democratic spirit."
The Cutting Edge News

"Thoughtful and surprising."
The Washington Post

"Rose is a natural storyteller [with] an inclusive vision...A very important book."
The Daily Kos

"Impassioned, compelling...[Rose] has the knack of an experienced news writer for placing you on the scene."
Education Review

"Rose insists eloquently that every productive adult in our society needs an education that fully engages the mind and heart."
Hedgehog Review

"We see what Rose sees, and hear what he hears, in deep and sustained ways as he travels alongside students he accompanies to class in a range of 'second chance' programs…We get to know those students."
The Journal of Higher Education

"Back to School makes its argument with Rose's usual intellectual thoroughness, low-key eloquence, and keen journalistic eye."
Erin Aubry Kaplan, KCET-TV

About the Author

Mike Rose, a professor at the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, is the author of many books, including Lives on the Boundary, The Mind at Work, and Possible Lives. Among his awards are a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Grawemeyer Award in Education, and the Commonwealth Club of California Award for Literary Excellence in Nonfiction. He lives in Santa Monica.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: The New Press (September 18, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595587861
  • ISBN-13: 978-1595587862
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 5.5 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #832,041 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
There is something so unbelievably profound and immediate about `Back to School', that after reading Rose's book I didn't know if I wanted to sign up for Community College classes or picket those responsible for cutting funding to education. In other words, I turned the last page and wanted to do something. This small tome is both brutally and gently honest about the world of continuing education, and the steps we need to take to change the dire situation we have found ourselves in. The heavy truths and insightful thoughts are tempered with anecdotes that illustrate and support each critical argument.

I found myself being challenged by some widely accepted American ideals, such as the traditional "Rags to Riches" story. However I also learned new things about my own education and the ways my own intelligence has been formed.

This book is critical to finding our way back to education for all, and in turn a brighter future for America. This is a book that every educator, policy maker, student, investor and pundit needs to read. This is a book that captures the seriousness of the situation the younger generations have found themselves in, with too much debt, little prospects and a grey future. This is a book for every adult with a fragmented education who wants a second chance to fill in the gaps, to stretch themselves, to inspire a brighter future for their children. This is not a book to be tossed aside lightly.
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Format: Hardcover
In Back to School Mike Rose makes a passionate argument for joining the hand and the mind through connecting the vocational and academic tracks in education. He also provides a series of compelling portraits of grown-ups who need a second chance at higher education, and who have much to offer back when given that chance. Back to School offers a hopeful vision of what our nation might become if we committed ourselves to educating not just "workers" but indivduals who form our communities and families. It's a terrific book that should be read by teachers and students, policy makers and the people whose lives are shaped by their policies.
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Format: Hardcover
Unique among popular education writers, Mike Rose approaches his readers with an assumption of their intelligence, empathy, good natures. He helps us see the very real people that policy affects, the struggle of those who get by from the help of government, strangers, friends, teachers and everyday mentors.

He doesn't approach educational reform with large good vs evil rhetoric or top-down policy suggestions, but, rather, through the lives of those he has observed, both the teachers and the students, he shows how the nurture provided by public education and services are like the good soil that helps lay the foundation that allows folks to be creative entrepreneurs of their own lives. This is a 21st century Walt Whitman singing the people of the welding shop, the remedial math class, and the dress-cutting floor.

I highly recommend this book for those who think they can't go back to school, for new and for burnt-out teachers, for anyone who appreciates reading of the struggles and small victories of everyday people and what they can teach us about life today in America.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Back to School is a continuation of "why school" in the same great prose Mike is known for. The insights from his observation of classroom instruction across the nation and interviews with students and faculty are invaluable to educators who see the value in Career technical and liberal arts education.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In his book "Back to School Why Everyone Deserves a Second Chance at Education" Mike Rose presents his arguments using sophisticated language in a brilliant simple manner that allows anyone reading his book to see clearly that is not about racial discrimination in the education system, but how to find a solution to the education gap that exist between secondary (community colleges) and primary (colleges like UCLA) educational institutions.

Rose understands that low income students not only need financial assistance or better academic resources to succeed in higher education, but calls for a deeper evaluation from policy makers who only focus on statistical dropout rates instead of the success stories and the impact secondary institutions have on students who are seeking higher education before making new policies.

If you had not giving coming back to school a second thought, after reading this book anyone from any walk of life could be persuaded to seek higher education. On the cover page the reader could relate to one of people in the picture. I am the second one from the left and have been back in college since last year. I enjoyed reading this book and anyone who reads it will too.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Stories, stories, stories, as a textbook it is hard to see the point but it does place everything in context. I am using this in one of myu Master Degrewe classes about social science in the adult classroom. Overall a good and easy read. My suggestion would be to take notes as you read it for class. The stories are one after another. Hard to keep all of them straight.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Mike Rose's latest book, "Back to School" is outstanding and important. Great commentary on how essential our system of community colleges is to so many - great warning about the growing gap in funding and care given to our two post-secondary systems, one that perpetuates the distance between the perceived "haves" and "have-nots." All who have attended community colleges and care about viable options for ALL of our students should read this book.
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