Download How Schools Work: An Inside Account of Failure and Success from One of the Nation's Longest-Serving Secretaries of Education Audiobook

How Schools Work: An Inside Account of Failure and Success from One of the Nations Longest-Serving Secretaries of Education Audiobook, by Arne Duncan Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Arne Duncan Narrator: Arne Duncan Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: August 2018 ISBN: 9781508267874
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From the Secretary of Education under President Obama, an exposé of the status quo that helps maintain a broken system at the expense of our kids’ education.

“Education runs on lies. That’s probably not what you’d expect from a former Secretary of Education, but it’s the truth.” So opens Arne Duncan’s How Schools Work, although the title could just as easily be How American Schools Work for Some, Not for Others, and Only Now and Then for Kids.

Drawing on nearly three decades in education—from his mother’s after-school program on Chicago’s South Side to his tenure as Secretary of Education in DC—How Schools Work follows Arne (as he insists you call him) as he takes on challenges at every turn: gangbangers in Chicago housing projects, parents who call him racist, teachers who insist they can’t help poor kids, unions that refuse to modernize, Tea Partiers who call him an autocrat, affluent white progressive moms who hate yearly tests, and even the NRA, which once labeled Arne the “most extreme anti-gun member of President Obama's Cabinet.” Going to a child’s funeral every couple of weeks, as he did when he worked in Chicago, will do that to a person.

How Schools Work exposes the lies that have caused American kids to fall behind their international peers, from early childhood all the way to college graduation rates. But it also celebrates the countless everyday heroes Arne has encountered along the way: teachers, principals, reformers, staffers, business people, mayors, and presidents.

How Schools Work will inspire parents, teachers, voters, and even students to demand more of our public schools. If America is going to be great, then we can accept nothing less. Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • “Arne Duncan narrates this audiobook about his work as Secretary of Education for the Obama administration. Duncan’s policy initiatives received criticism; this audiobook acts as a defense, as well as a deeper explanation, of those policies…Duncan’s voice resonates with his passion for education. He narrates a series of stories that weave data and decisions, creating the feel of a symposium of one.”


  • “This book merits every American’s serious consideration.”

    Joe Biden

  • How Schools Work is as insightful as it is inspiring…This is a book every American must read.”

    Washington Book Review

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About the Author

Arne Duncan was one of the longest serving members of President Barack Obama’s cabinet and among the most influential secretaries of education in history. He has spent nearly three decades across all levels of education, from his mother’s after-school program on Chicago’s South Side to CEO of Chicago Public Schools. He sits on the board of Communities in Schools.