From the New Deal to the War on Schools
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208 pages

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In an era defined by political polarization, both major U.S. parties have come to share a remarkably similar understanding of the education system as well as a set of punitive strategies for fixing it. Combining an intellectual history of social policy with a sweeping history of the educational system, Daniel S. Moak looks beyond the rise of neoliberalism to find the origin of today's education woes in Great Society reforms.

In the wake of World War II, a coalition of thinkers gained dominance in U.S. policymaking. They identified educational opportunity as the ideal means of addressing racial and economic inequality by incorporating individuals into a free market economy. The passage of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) in 1965 secured an expansive federal commitment to this goal. However, when social problems failed to improve, the underlying logic led policymakers to hold schools responsible. Moak documents how a vision of education as a panacea for society's flaws led us to turn away from redistributive economic policies and down the path to market-based reforms, No Child Left Behind, mass school closures, teacher layoffs, and other policies that plague the public education system to this day.



Publié par
Date de parution 10 mai 2022
Nombre de lectures 0
EAN13 9781469668215
Langue English

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From the New Deal to the War on Schools
From the New Deal to the War on Schools
Race, Inequality, and the Rise of the Punitive Education State
The University of North Carolina Press    Chapel Hill
This book was published with the assistance of the Anniversary Fund of the University of North Carolina Press.
© 2022 Daniel S. Moak
All rights reserved
Set in Arno Pro by Westchester Publishing Services
Manufactured in the United States of America
The University of North Carolina Press has been a member of the Green Press Initiative since 2003.
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Names: Moak, Daniel S., author.
Title: From the New Deal to the war on schools : race, inequality, and the rise of the punitive education state / Daniel S. Moak.
Description: Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, [2022] | Includes bibliographical references and index.
Identifiers: LCCN 2021054798 | ISBN 9781469668192 (cloth) | ISBN 9781469668208 (paperback) | ISBN 9781469668215 (ebook)
Subjects: LCSH : Education—United States—History—20th century. | Racism in education—United States—History—20th century. | Discrimination in education—United States—History—20th century. | United States—Social policy—20th century.
Classification: LCC LA 209 . M 58 2022 | DDC 370.973—dc23/eng/20211116
LC record available at https:// lccn .loc .gov /2021054798
Cover illustration: Broken pencil by Mark S. Moak.
To my first teachers, my parents,
Mark Moak and Rhett Moak
and the many other teachers
who made this book possible
Contents Acknowledgments Abbreviations Used in the Text INTRODUCTION The Politics of the Federal Education State: Faith in Education and the Turn toward Punitiveness Part I From Political Economy to Equal Opportunity: The Struggle over Ideas, 1932–1965 CHAPTER ONE To Reconstruct or Adjust? The Battle within the Progressive Education Movement, 1920s–1940s CHAPTER TWO The Achievement of Civil Rights within the Status Quo: Race and Class in Black Political Visions, 1930s–1950s CHAPTER THREE Courts, Communism, and Commercialism: The Rise of the Liberal Incorporationist Coalition Part II From Ideology to Institutionalization: The Foundations of the Federal Education State, 1965–1980 CHAPTER FOUR The Great Society and the Ideological Origins of the Federal Education State CHAPTER FIVE From Belief to Blame: Federal Funding and the Punitive Policy Shift CONCLUSION The Enduring Legacy of the Liberal Incorporationist Education State: Persistence and Possibility in the Current Era Notes Bibliography Index
I first became fully aware of the deeply political nature of education in 2002 during my junior year of high school. The teachers of School District 2 in Billings, Montana, after years of languishing wages and rising insurance costs, and in the face of the new threat of No Child Left Behind, went on strike for the first time in twenty-seven years. For three weeks, they demonstrated the power of collective action as they articulated demands that centered the value of education as a public good. Shortly before Thanksgiving, their efforts resulted in substantial victories. That moment, and the discussion with teachers that followed, was a turning point for me. For this, and for the tireless efforts of all of the teachers throughout my time in the public school system, I am forever grateful to the teachers of the Billings Public Schools.
I was fortunate enough to have brilliant mentors throughout my time in higher education. The earliest germs of this project were developed in Melissa Buis Michaux’s transformational classroom at Willamette University, and I still hear the voices of David Gutterman and Sally Markowitz in my mind when I write. Rogers Smith and Sigal Ben-Porath have offered extensive feedback and mentorship for the last ten years. Marie Gottschalk, my mentor since my first day of graduate school, has never stopped providing support and insight. Her patience, perspective-shifting teaching, and committed scholarship are testaments to what academia can be at its best. Throughout many seminar courses, one-on-one meetings, and after-work drinks, Adolph Reed has profoundly shaped my view of the world. His friendship throughout this process has made a difficult road much more enjoyable, and his dedication to fighting for working people provides a source of continuous inspiration.
Throughout my time in graduate school at the University of Pennsylvania, I was fortunate enough to meet and become friends with incredibly gifted scholars and outstanding human beings. Their influence is present throughout this book. Thank you to Emmerich Davies, Joshua Darr, Chelsea Schafer, Ian Hartshorn, Joanna Wuest, Carly Regina, Danielle Hanley, Anthony Grasso, Evan Perkowski, Laura Silver, Chris Brown, Allison Evans, David Bateman, and Tim Weaver.
For providing an intellectual home and encouragement, I want to thank the faculty and staff of the African American Studies Department at Ohio University. Gary Holcomb, Akil Houston, Bayyinah Jeffries, Robin Dearmon Muhammad, and Patricia Gunn have been steadfast in their support, especially when times have been tough.
My Ohio University colleagues from outside my department have been critical for finishing the project. Nicole Kaufmann, Haley Duschinski, Yeong-Hyun Kim, Larry Hayman, Jennifer Fredette, Lauren Elliot-Dorans, and Kathleen Sullivan provided guidance and encouragement at critical parts of the process. I am particularly indebted to Kirstine Taylor, Susan Burgess, Kate Leeman, Laura Black, Ted Welser, Marina Baldisserra Pachetti, and Yoichi Ishida—the Mystic Monday squad—who offered support and love when I needed it most.
No person had greater influence on this project than Sarah Cate. She has read every word of every iteration of this book, for which I am both sorry and incredibly grateful. Her critical eye and profound intellect has made this project better and her wisdom, selflessness, and humor has made my life better.
I am so grateful for the people at the University of North Carolina (UNC) Press. Brandon Proia, my editor, has been a joy to work with. This book could not have happened without his careful feedback and encouragement. I would also like to thank series editors Rhonda Williams and Heather Ann Thompson for their support. Thank you also to the staff of UNC Press, and to the anonymous reviewers.
I am particularly thankful for the committed public servants at the Krassel Fire Office on the Payette National Forest. Their support of fire lookouts is unrivaled, and I am incredibly proud to work with them. And thank you to Williams Peak—which provided support by way of long walks, unmatched views, and huckleberries.
My parents, Mark and Rhett Moak, were the first to teach me that the value of education extended beyond some abstract future financial reward. Their skills in the classroom and their life-changing impact on their students inevitably inspired me to attempt to follow in their footsteps. Their tireless support, encouragement, and love made this endeavor possible. I will never be able to thank them enough. My sisters, Leah and Ellen, have been my first, fiercest, and most frequent intellectual challengers on matters big and small. The ability to run ideas by their two brilliant minds has been invaluable, and their humor has kept me laughing—and humble—for over three decades. Huck has been a loyal and constant companion throughout this process and has reminded me that walks are an essential part of the creative process. For teaching me to struggle for a better world, you all have my thanks and my love.
Abbreviations Used in the Text
American Federation of Teachers
American Teachers Association
Behavioral Research Laboratories
Council of Economic Advisors
Congress of Industrial Organizations
Congress of Racial Equality
Communist Party of the United States of America
Civil Rights Congress
Center for the Study of Public Policy
Chicago Teachers Union
Daughters of the American Revolution
Department of Health, Education, and Welfare
Elementary and Secondary Education Act
Every Student Succeeds Act
House Un-American Activities Committee
Journal of Negro Education
Metropolitan Applied Research Center
National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
No Child Left Behind
National Education Association
National Labor Relations Act
National Negro Congress
National Scholarship Service and Fund for Negro Students
National Urban League
Office of Economic Opportunity
Race to the Top
Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee
United Nations
U.S. Office of Education
Washington Teachers’ Union
From the New Deal to the War on Schools
The Politics of the Federal Education State
Faith in Education and the Turn toward Punitiveness
On July 23, 2010, Washington, D.C.’s chancellor of education Michelle Rhee fired 241 teachers in a single day. In addition to roughly 5 percent of the total teachers in the district, sixty-one other district employees lost their jobs, including librarians, counselors, and custodians. 1 The mass layoff was just the latest evidence of the expansive nature of the aggressive education reform occurring in Washington, D.C.—and throughout the nation.
Rhee had quickly commenced restructuring public education in the nation’s capital after being appointed to the newly created position of chancellor in 2007. Backed by millions of dollars from the nonprofit foundations of some of the nation’s most prominent billionaires, including $25 million from the Walton Foundation, Rhee went to war with the D.C. teachers’ union. 2 In her short three-and-a-half-year tenure, Rhee closed or reconstituted dozens of traditional public schools, pushed for the expansion of charter schools, and tied the pay of

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