The author considers how grantseeking among urban public school teachers has introduced selected teachers to the central tenets of the privatization movement while simultaneously excluding teachers of color and those whose native language is not English.
Based on interviews with policy makers in six states, this article examines the policies of charter school reform and maintains that the apparent bipartisan support for these more autonomous schools masks opposing viewpoints about the purpose of this reform.
The authors in this study found that charter schools have greater levels of parent involvement, but this involvement may be due to selectivity in the kinds of families participating in charter schools.
An examination of the sources of support for a K-12 voucher program.
Privatization and the prospect of increasing the racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic homogeneity of American schools
Research on requests to transfer to magnet schools in Montgomery County, Maryland, suggests that racial factors play a strong role in school choice. This paper argues that unfettered choice still has the potential to exacerbate racial separation, even in relatively liberal and progressive settings like Montgomery County.
This article explains briefly the provisions of Goals 2000, emphasizing its support of ongoing educational change at the state and local levels and state flexibility to develop diverse approaches to reform. To illustrate this flexibility, the article describes reform activities in Vermont, Delaware, and Oregon, and explains how these states are using initial Goals 2000 funds.
An introduction to the Teachers College Record symposium on Politics, Markets, and America's schools. Explores the impact of race and class on parents and students' freedom to choose.
The author offers a few of his worries about a rapid move toward choice as the main basis for improving schools. The author’s dominant worry about choice as a panacea (which Chubb and Moe say it is) is a gnawing suspicion that panaceas are most unlikely to exist for large, complicated social problems.
The author responds to Laurel Tanner’s review of his book Building the American Community. There are three things about Tanner’s review that trouble the author: First, Tanner does not really tell potential readers what the book is about; second, she is neither particularly careful nor accurate in her criticisms; and third, she sets a tone for her review that is vindictive.
A reply to Edwin G. West's "An Economic Rational for Public Schools: The Search Continues."
The merits and limitations of expanding family choice of education for children are discussed, with emphasis on how such choice affects students and teachers, what are the competing objectives, and what regulates the choices families may make.
A review of the economic assumptions underlying arguments for and against school vouchers.
Magnet schools strive to draw students voluntarily to racially mixed settings by offering diversified educational opportunities. The impact of magnet schools on the political and organizational processes of a school system are discussed.
Using experience as superintent of Arlington, Va. public schools between 1974 and 1981 as a launch pad, the author provides a brief historical analysis of corporate involvement in public schools and discusses the importance for educators of striking a balance between external and internal interests.
A look at the improving conditions for the use of educational vouchers in the 1980s.
Discusses resource reallocation, community control, and tuition vouchers, and how each affects the role of the state, the community, and the family in the education process.
Substituting consumer accountability for political accountability is not in the long run a good bargain for either parents or society. Majority rule should be tempered with a respect for minority differences, and public education should offer many alternatives, but deciding educational policy forces a society to confront ultimate questions about its future. Such decisions are better made through the democratic process than the marketplace.
The economic feasibility of the voucher system of educational funding is explored.
There are good reasons for citizens to be concerned about the halting progress which we have made to speed school desegregation and to improve the quality of education for the ghetto child. The effective reform of the large city school systems will not be easy, which helps to explain why a White House Task Force some years ago, in an unpublished report, unanimously recommended the establishment in each major metropolis of a competitive system of education subsidized by large federal funds for a period of a decade or more. Here was a remedy cut to size. The voucher system is not. Moreover, vouchers threaten many values that need reinforcing, not weakening. The country needs institutional reforms, not more gimmicks.
During the late 1960s, a series of developments in both public and nonpublic education led to a revival of interest in this approach to financing education. In December, 1969, the United States Office of Economic Opportunity made a grant to the Center for the Study of Public Policy to support a detailed study of "education vouchers." This article will summarize the major findings of that report and outline briefly the voucher plan proposed by the Center.
The many ramifications of a voucher system of educational funding are probed.
The pros and cons of providing vouchers to school children are discussed.
Charter school advocates promised that charter schools would improve achievement, or, at the very least attain the same level of achievement with fewer resources because of increased efficiency. Part of the promise was that charter schools that did not improve achievement would be shut down. Whereas public schools were felt to be held accountable through compliance, charters would be held accountability through performance. After over a decade of charters, the improved achievement promise has gone largely unrealized. In fact, many evaluations have found charters underperforming matched regular public schools. Despite this lack of improved achievement, few charters have been shut down for academic reasons, 0.6 of one percent, by one estimate. Yet charters continue to grow in popularity and are actively promoted and funded by the current administration. The reasons for continued support in the face of low performance are discussed.
The logic of school choice presumes that given the opportunity, parents will choose "better" schools for their children. But is every school a "real" option for all parents? Through the introduction of the concept of choice sets, this commentary considers some of the social and historical factors which shape the set of schools from which parents actually choose.
After visiting a "successful" charter school in Washington DC, I question why policy makers are so pleased with schools for minority children that focus exclusively on test-prep and strict discipline, comparing this to the rich educational offerings in suburban public schools. I argue that creating racially and socio-economically integrated schools, for all of its challenges and shortcomings, at least has the advantage of equalizing opportunity and derailing efforts to create an educational system that has one objective and one set of rules for poor minority kids, and a vast wealth of options and opportunities for everyone else.