As a high school student myself, I was intrigued by Peg Tyre's article about a Staten Island school's turnaround. Tyre shows the importance of writing skills to academic and professional success. She looks specifically at the new and improved curriculum at New Dorp High School, which emphasizes analysis over self-expression.
On a basic level, the idea works just fine. To perform well on tests and slap together personal statements, students need to be able to string words into sentences and sentences into paragraphs. The grammar and paragraph structure learned in English class are also handy in most jobs when schooling ends and students are tossed headfirst into the "real world." An astrophysicist must be able to describe her data, and a business executive needs to be able to write clear memos. But should schools solely focus on the mechanical facets of writing? (Haley Lee at Education Week)