Quantcast

Opinion: Are Wall Street values right for schools?

Last week on a flight back from England, I read Michael Lewis’ latest book, Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt. I found myself highlighting passages, struck by parallels with the corporate education reform movement. It’s not surprising as both industries involve players from high tech and hedge funds — and, of course, the politicians who enable them.

Upon reading this quote from Constantine Sokoloff, a Russian who helped develop NASDAQ’s matching system for buyers and sellers: “The old Soviet educational system channeled people away from the humanities and into math and science,” a political sound bite started playing in my head:

“The president and I believe that ensuring our nation’s children are excelling in the STEM fields is essential for our nation’s prosperity, security, health and quality of life . . . All of us need to be engaged in task of improving STEM education. Business leaders and major donors are leading the way, and leaders from other sectors need to join them.” US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, November 2009

Brad Katsuyama, the former Royal Bank of Canada trader who co-founded the IEX exchange featured in Flash Boys, made this observation about the dark pools and stock exchanges used by high frequency traders: “It’s an entire industry that overglorifies data, because data is so easy to game and the true data is so hard to obtain.”

Sarah Darer Littman is an award-winning columnist and novelist of books for teens. A former securities analyst, she’s now an adjunct in the MFA program at WCSU, and enjoys helping young people discover the power of finding their voice as an instructor at the Writopia Lab.

See the complete story at CT News Junkie.

Comments

Leave a Reply


Recent Comments