[I]t’s time for me to get in touch with my inner optimist. We can’t make our kids much smarter than they are naturally, but we can do a hugely better job of teaching them stuff. If you get away from the worst schools in the big cities, I think the central problem with the public schools is not poor teachers, but the curriculum teachers are given to teach, especially in elementary and middle school.
- Charles Murray
Murray goes on to tout the Core Knowledge sequence, as he did in his last book, Real Education.
I'd say the second biggest obstacle is teacher preparation and training. Teachers largely do not have the necessary skills to effectively teach the most effective curricula. They have difficulty teaching from a scripted curriculum in the absence of a considerable amount of training. Needless to say, they aren't getting this training in Ed school.