Reform Policy

An Education in Politics: The Origins and Evolution of No by Jesse H. Rhodes

By Jesse H. Rhodes

Since the early Nineties, the federal position in education—exemplified through the debatable No baby Left in the back of Act (NCLB)—has elevated dramatically. but states and localities have retained a critical function in schooling coverage, resulting in a growing to be fight for regulate over the path of the nation's colleges. In An schooling in Politics, Jesse H. Rhodes explains the asymmetric improvement of federal involvement in schooling. whereas supporters of elevated federal involvement loved a few luck in bringing new principles to the federal coverage time table, Rhodes argues, in addition they encountered stiff resistance from proponents of neighborhood keep an eye on. equipped atop present decentralized rules, new federal reforms raised tricky questions about which point of presidency bore final accountability for bettering schools.

Rhodes's argument specializes in the position performed by way of civil rights activists, enterprise leaders, and schooling specialists in selling the reforms that might be enacted with federal rules comparable to NCLB. It additionally underscores the limitations on federal involvement imposed via latest schooling rules, adversarial curiosity teams, and, exceptionally, the nation’s federal approach. certainly, the federal approach, which left particular coverage formation and implementation to the states and localities, again and again pissed off efforts to impression alterations: nationwide reforms misplaced their strength as guidelines gone through iterations on the country, county, and municipal degrees. sarcastically, nation and native resistance basically inspired civil rights activists, company leaders, and their political allies to recommend much more stringent reforms that imposed heavier burdens on country and native governments. via all of it, the nation’s schooling process made merely incremental steps towards the aim of supplying a top quality schooling for each child.

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Extra resources for An Education in Politics: The Origins and Evolution of No Child Left Behind

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Did not enumerate what had to occur within the production process of schooling itself. ”36 One major consequence of the limited capacity and influence of state governments in education was remarkable variation within states on such core matters as curriculum, staffing, accountability, and school finance. ”37 In part, this was driven by the quest for rational management and standardization that permeated virtually all areas of public policy from the Progressive Era onward. State policymakers mounted consolidation campaigns to reduce the number of school districts and bring about a more centralized system of public schooling.

1 Even the coming of the New Deal, which revolutionized federal involvement in many areas of social policy, almost completely bypassed elementary and secondary education; well into the 1950s, in fact, the propriety of any federal involvement in schooling remained an issue of contention. It was only after the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision that federal involvement in education gradually began to take shape. Inspired by the civil rights movement, the landmark Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 sought to provide greater economic and social opportunities for historically disadvantaged children through more equal access to better-funded schools.

In addition to increased (and more equal) spending, educational liberals have preferred reforms that empower school personnel, especially teachers, to educate children, such as increased flexibility within the terms of federal and state regulations and expanded support for professional development (of course this is not surprising, especially from teachers and administrators who value their autonomy). Because they are strong proponents of—and often employees of—public schools, educational liberals have been staunch critics of market reforms, which 22 Introduction they view as an existential threat to public schools.

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