Jennifer Berkshire and historian Jack Schneider conduct a very interesting discussion with scholars who have written about no-excuses charter schools and public Montessori schools. 

They interview Mira Debs of Yale and Joanne Golann of Vanderbilt about their research.

They wonder, what do parents want? The answers might surprise you.

Incidentally, I communicated to Berkshire and Schneider that the origin of the term “no excuses” for strict schools was not the book by Abigail and Stephan Thernstrom with that name, which was published in 2004, but a small book by a writer named Samuel Casey, which was called “No Excuses: Lessons from 21 High-Poverty, High-Performing Schools.” 

The publication date on the paperback copy is 2000, but I remember going to a dinner at the Heritage Foundation where Mr. Casey presented his findings, and it must have been in the late 1990s. Conservatives were thrilled to learn that the answer to the education of poor black children was not more money, but strict discipline. It fit their preconceptions.