Pedro Noguera argues that the "miracle" David Brooks saw in Harlem is actually the result of a proven formula for urban school improvement. (Photo courtesy Pedro Noguera)

We’ve said in the past that our long-term plan is to expand our Community section to include more voices. Today we’re taking a step in that direction with a contribution from Pedro Noguera, the New York University professor and co-chair of the Broader, Bolder project (the one that clashes with Rev. Al Sharpton and Chancellor Joel Klein’s Education Equality Project).

Noguera argues that David Brooks’ recent New York Times column on the Harlem Children’s Zone drew the wrong conclusion:

In most cases, these schools succeed not because they impart middle class values, (there is very little evidence that the middle class is the only group that values hard work and courteous behavior) but because of high academic expectations and a clear, coherent approach to educating children. Most importantly, these schools succeed because they also address social, health and psychological needs of the children and families they serve.

Read Noguera’s full commentary here. And please feel free to send your own commentaries. We’re building the Community section up slowly, but we are building it up.