The Weekly Sam: We Know How to Teach

Sam Blumenfeld wrote this letter to the New York Times in 2007:

To the Editor
The New York Times
New York, NY 10018
Lee W. Anderson’s letter to the Times on October 8, 2007 reveals exactly what is wrong with
American public education. He wrote: “The goal of universal math and reading proficiency by
2014 may be harder to reach than the moon, which simply means that we have to get more
serious about providing schools, teachers and students with the tools they need.”
What are the tools they need? They existed when I attended New York public schools in the
1930s and ’40s, and they certainly can be used today. Progressive educators, who are
responsible for the present state of public education, are as serious as they can be about
maintaining their faulty curriculum: whole language reading instruction, the new math, the new
new math, invented spelling, etc.

As a creator of a very effective intensive phonics reading program, I know how difficult it is to
break through Fortress Progressiva. But let’s not kid the American public. We know how to
teach both reading and math effectively. It is the progressive educational establishment that
refuses to use the methods that work or return to the curriculum that produced America’s greatest
Samuel L. Blumenfeld
Waltham, Mass. October 12, 2007
Author of The New Illiterates, and NEA: Trojan Horse in American Education.

This letter is part of the Sam Blumenfeld Archive which is a free on-line resource for homeschoolers, teachers, educators, historians and all others with an active intellect: