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In this post: the large versions of the Education and Careers and Politics channel photos, comments from readers, and the best posts of the week.


Education and Careers. Math class in Penang, Malaysia. From Flickr, by cleong


Politics. Massachusetts state capitol building. From Flickr, by redjar

Reader comments of the week:

This week in the Education and Careers Channel Chad Orzel of Uncertain Principles took some time out to fantasize about Fixing Science Education. Given unlimited, nigh-Godlike powers, what would need fixing? Chad explained:

The key to fixing science education, like all education, it to make sure that we have the best teachers possible, which means getting people with good science and math skills to become educators. As I see it, there are three obstacles that need to be overcome, one cultural, one financial, and one quality-of-life issue.

Yes, turns out science teachers aren’t respected or paid enough. No doubt that fact burns even more when science teachers have to look at all those art teachers standing next to a Bentley in front of their mansion while on the cover of People Magazine. Reader Eric Lund noted that the more things change, the more things stay the same:

From your description, public high schools have the same problems they did when I was in high school more than 20 years ago. More than one of my teachers warned me against going into high school teaching, and we had problems with parents insisting that their little Johnny or Susie couldn’t possibly be as bad as the teachers were claiming. And I was in a fortunate situation: my high school class had enough ‘smart’ kids to form a critical mass and hold our own against any bullies.

Lucky for Eric he had that critical mass. I didn’t, and had to rely on the Fonz to keep bullies away. No, wait, that was Happy Days, I just got beat up a lot. I make that mistake all the time.

Meanwhile the Politics Channel continued to look financial crisis, with Josh Rosenau of Thoughts From Kansas looking at how and why the Bailout Fails. Josh concentrated on McCain’s actions during the crisis:

In any event, this is a catastrophic setback for John McCain. Last week, he stupidly inserted himself into the process. First he made a lot of noise about suspending his campaign to fly back to DC. Then he sat largely silent in meetings, speaking up only once, and that was to give tepid endorsement to a splinter plan from conservative House Republicans which would’ve left taxpayers holding the bag if the financial system collapsed, but which offered no upside to taxpayers if the bailout succeeded.

While most of the reader comments concentrated on either McCain or the speech Nancy Pelosi gave before the vote, reader Michael Ejercito astutely brought up that it was as much of a Democrat failure as a Republican failure:

Of course, it should be noted that the bailout could have passed without a single Republican vote. And yet it failed, despite sixty-five Republicans voting for it.
How did Speaker Pelosi fail to appease the concerns of the ninety-five Democrats who voted against the bailout?

We here at Sb will continue to cover the financial crisis as long as it lasts. Or at the very least as long as our generator still has power, seeing as we are holing up in the woods with nothing but canned food and guns until this thing blows over.

Some other Education and Career posts we thought were cool this week were:

Marketing Science

why are grades confidential?

A sad goodbye to Seattle Central Community College biotech

Adopted Physicist

Journals object to index metrics

And from the Politics channel:

Another Case of Forced Religious Rehab

Peter Norvig on his Obama endorsement

Where the blame lies

Sarah Palin on evolution and climate change

You Don’t Have to Pass an IQ Test to be in the Senate

Look for highlights from other channels coming up!