Critical Issues in Education: Dialogues and Dialectics

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  • Edition: 7th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-02-26
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Humanities/Social Sciences/Languages
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Critical Issues in Educationis designed to be used in courses that examine current, relevant pro and con disputes about schools and schooling. By exploring the major opposing viewpoints on these issues, the text encourages education students to think critically and develop their own viewpoints. The clear writing and dramatic dialectic approach are conducive to dynamic classroom discussions that help students grasp the many sides of these complex issues. Three integrating themes provide a solid framework for examining the eighteen topics covered. Each part begins with a chapter-length introduction that provides background material and organizing themes for the issues that follow. Each issue is then presented from two divergent viewpoints, each one written in advocate language to be as compelling as possible. The book's objective, in addition to informing the reader about the issues, is to develop critical thinking skills within the context of education. .

Table of Contents

Forewordp. xiii
Prefacep. xvi
Introduction: Critical Issues and Critical Thinkingp. 1
Introductionp. 2
Democratic Vitality and Educational Criticismp. 9
The Political Context of Schoolingp. 14
A Tradition of School Criticism and Reformp. 15
Whose Interests Should Schools Serve? Justice and Equity
School Choice: Family or Public Fundingp. 52
Is family choice of schools in the public interest?p. 52
For Family Choice in Educationp. 52
Against Vouchersp. 61
Financing Schools: Equity or Disparityp. 75
Is it desirable to equalize educational spending among school districts within a state or across the nation?p. 75
For Justice in Educational Financep. 75
Against Centralization in Educational Financingp. 84
Gender Equity: Eliminating Discrimination or Accommodating Differencep. 97
Is it ever necessary to create schools or classroom settings that separate students by gender?p. 97
Eliminating Discriminationp. 97
Accommodating Differencesp. 105
Standards-Based Reform: Real Change or Political Smoke Screenp. 116
Will the standards-based reform movement improve education or discriminate against poor and disadvantaged students?p. 116
Standards-Based Reform Promises Quality Education for All Studentsp. 116
Standards-Based Reform is a Political Smoke Screenp. 125
Religion and Public Schools: Unification or Separationp. 138
How do schools find a balance between freedom of religious expression and the separation of church and state?p. 138
For Religious Freedom in Schoolsp. 138
Against Violating the Separation between Church and Statep. 147
Privatization of Schools: Boon or Banep. 159
What criteria are most suitable for deciding whether schools are better when they are operated as a public or private enterprise?p. 159
Public Schools Should be Privatizedp. 159
Public Schools Should be Publicp. 167
Corporations, Commerce, and Schools: Complementing or Competing Interestsp. 184
Does school support become corporate support?p. 184
Businesses are School Partnersp. 184
Commercializing the Schoolp. 194
New Immigrants and the Schools: Unfair Burden or Business as Usualp. 210
Should schools offer free opportunity to all children of new immigrants?p. 210
Schools Should Offer Educational Opportunities to All Children of New Immigrants.p. 210
Bad Policy Overburdens Schoolsp. 218
What Should be Taught? Knowledge and Literacy
The Academic Achievement Gap: Old Remedies or Newp. 243
Are already existing policies and practices reducing the academic achievement gap or are new measures needed?p. 243
For Maintaining Existing Programsp. 243
For Innovative Solutionsp. 254
Values/Character Education: Traditional or Liberationalp. 265
Which and whose values should public schools teach, and why?p. 265
Teach Traditional Valuesp. 265
Liberation Through Active Value Inquiryp. 273
Multicultural Education: Democratic or Divisivep. 289
Should schools emphasize America's cultural diversity or the shared aspects of American culture?p. 289
Multiculturalism: Central to a Democratic Educationp. 289
Multiculturalism is Divisive and Destructivep. 297
Technology and Learning: Enabling or Subvertingp. 309
What technology deserves significant school attention and who should decide?p. 309
Technology Enables Learningp. 309
Technology Can Subvert Learningp. 319
Standardized Testing: Restrict or Expandp. 335
Should the use of standardized school tests be increased or decreased?p. 335
For Restricting Testingp. 335
For Expanding Testingp. 343
How Should Schools Be Organized And Operated? School Environment
Discipline and Justice: Zero Tolerance or Discretionp. 363
What concept of justice should govern school and classroom discipline?p. 363
Zero-Tolerance Disciplinary Policies Provide Justice in Public Schoolsp. 363
Zero-Tolerance Discipline Policies are Fundamentally Unjustp. 371
Teacher Unions and School Leadership: Detrimental or Beneficialp. 382
Should teachers and their unions be given a larger role in running public schools?p. 382
Teachers and Teacher Unions Should Play a Major Role in School Leadershipp. 382
Teachers and Teacher Unions Should Not Play a Role in School Leadershipp. 389
Academic Freedom: Teacher Rights or Responsibilitiesp. 400
How should the proper balance between teacher freedom and responsibility be determined?p. 400
For Increased Academic Freedomp. 400
For Teacher Responsibilityp. 411
Inclusion and Mainstreaming: Common or Special Educationp. 425
When and why should selected children be provided inclusive or special treatment in schools?p. 425
For Full Inclusionp. 425
Special Programs Help Special Studentsp. 434
Violence in Schools: School Treatable or Beyond School Controlp. 451
Can schools deal effectively with violent or potentially violent students?p. 451
Schools Can and Should Curb Violencep. 451
The Problem of School Violence is Beyond School Controlp. 457
Indexp. 469
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