ON-Lion Letter
Few people have been more involved in shaping postwar U.S. education reforms -- or dissented from them more effectively -- than Chester E. Finn, Jr.  An assistant secretary of education under President Ronald Reagan and a top aide to politicians as different as Sen. Daniel Moynihan and President Richard Nixon, Finn has also been a high-school teacher, an education professor, a prolific and best-selling author, and both a Democrat and a Republican. 

He is now president of the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation and the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, several projects of which have been supported by The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation in Milwaukee.

In his new autobiography, Troublemaker:  A History of School Reform Since Sputnik, Finn gives his insider's view of every significant school-reform movement of the past four decades, from racial integration to No child Left Behind.  He tells why he thinks parents should be given more education options at the same time that schools are allowed more flexibility and held to higher performance norms.

Finn also explains why education reforms of all kinds are so difficult to implement, and he draws lessons from their frequent failure.

Troublemaker is the personal story of one of the foremost players, and mavericks, in American education and a vivid history of postwar education reform.  Clear-eyed yet optimistic, it gives grounds for hope that the best of today's reforms are beginning to make a difference.
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