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Children as Pawns: The Politics of Educational Reform


reviewed by Sandra Vergari — 2003

coverTitle: Children as Pawns: The Politics of Educational Reform
Author(s): Timothy A. Hacsi
Publisher: Harvard University Press, Cambridge
ISBN: 0674007441 , Pages: 261, Year: 2002
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Despite its provocative title, this book focuses largely on reviewing research rather than on political dynamics.  The book would have been more useful for readers with an interest in education politics and policy if its analytical focus had been on how politics have shaped education policy, as suggested by the book’s title.  Policymakers are discussed only occasionally, and Hacsi does not frame his discussion with findings and insights from the research literatures on public policy, the politics of education, or the politics of research.  Four of the five policy chapters emphasize mass media reports, yet Hacsi does not discuss how and why mass media coverage matters for education policy.   The book discusses evaluation research on five controversial education issues:  Head Start, bilingual education, class size, social promotion, and school finance.  For each of the five issues, Hacsi provides helpful background information and discussion of policy change over time.  At the outset of each chapter, Hacsi presents two quotes that express opposing viewpoints on the education issue addressed in... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 105 Number 4, 2003, p. 564-567
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 10964, Date Accessed: 10/23/2017 4:58:33 PM

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About the Author
  • Sandra Vergari
    State University of New York at Albany
    E-mail Author
    SANDRA VERGARI is Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Administration and Policy Studies and a faculty affiliate with the Department of Public Administration and Policy at the University at Albany, State University of New York. She is a political scientist whose research focuses on education reform politics and policies. Vergari is the editor of The Charter School Landscape (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2002).
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