Cuba's Academic Advantage: Why Students in Cuba Do Better in School
In this book, Martin Carnoy explores the surprising success of the Cuban educational system, where the average elementary school student learns much more than her Latin American peers. In developing the case for Cuba's supportive social context and centralized management of education, Carnoy asks important questions about educational systems in general. How responsible should government be for creating environments that encourage academic achievement? How much autonomy should teachers and schools have over their classrooms? Is there an inherent tradeoff between promoting individual choice and a better system of schooling?
Cuba's Academic Advantage challenges many prevailing views about the effectiveness of educational markets, school and teacher autonomy, decentralized decision-making, and government responsibility for children's social and economic welfare. Drawing on interviews with teachers, principals, and policymakers, as well as hours of videotaped material taken in more than 30 classrooms, this book brings new evidence to bear on controversial educational issues currently under debate in many countries.