Publications

Books, edited books, and journal articles related to educational equity and opportunity.

 

The Fight for Local Control: Schools, Suburbs, and American Democracy

Fight for Local ControlCampbell R. Scribner
Cornell University Press | American Institutions and Society, copyright @2016

Throughout the twentieth century, local control of school districts was one of the most contentious issues in American politics. As state and federal regulation attempted to standardize public schools, conservatives defended local prerogative as a bulwark of democratic values. Yet their commitment to those values was shifting and selective. In The Fight for Local Control, Campbell F. Scribner demonstrates how, in the decades after World War II, suburban communities appropriated legacies of rural education to assert their political autonomy and in the process radically changed educational law.

Learning from the Federal Market-Based Reforms: Lesson for ESSA

Market based reformsEdited by:
William J. Mathis, University of Colorado, Boulder
Tina M. Trujillo, University of California, Berkeley 
Information Age Press, copyright @2016

Over the past twenty years, educational policy has been characterized by top‐down, market‐focused policies combined with a push toward privatization and school choice. The new Every Student Succeeds Act continues along this path, though with decision‐making authority now shifted toward the states. These market‐based reforms have often been touted as the most promising response to the challenges of poverty and educational disenfranchisement. But has this approach been successful? Has learning improved? Have historically low‐scoring schools “turned around” or have the reforms had little effect? Have these narrow conceptions of schooling harmed the civic and social purposes of education in a democracy?

This book presents the evidence. Drawing on the work of the nation’s most prominent researchers, the book explores the major elements of these reforms, as well as the social, political, and educational contexts in which they take place. The weight of the evidence indisputably shows little success and no promise for these reforms.  The book concludes with a review of more promising avenues for educational reform, including the necessity of broader societal investments for combatting poverty and adverse social conditions.

Charting Reform, Achieving Equity in a Diverse Nation
 

Charting Reform, Achieving Equity in a Diverse Nation Edited by Gail L. Sunderman 
Information Age Press, copyright ©2013 
A volume in Research in Educational Policy: Local, National, and Global Perspectives 
Series Editor Kenneth K. Wong, Brown University

While there is growing awareness of the increasing racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic diversity of the nation, there is little recognition of how these trends affect the schools, particularly in formerly homogeneous communities. At the same time, inequalities in student achievement between different racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups persist, even as educational policy has intensified the focus on the achievement gap. These two challenges make definitions of equity and opportunity as urban problems obsolete and call for a critical examination of educational policy and reform from an equity perspective. This book examines what equity means in a nation where the schools are becoming more diverse. The authors consider how well our educational reform policies, often framed in the language of equity and opportunity, measure up to the challenges of achieving equity in a diverse nation. Central themes include the critical examination of how equity is conceived under the law and in policy, the experiences of minority students in suburban schools, and the impact of current reform policies and strategies for achieving greater educational opportunities for all students.Edited by Gail L. Sunderman