This book argues that the structure of public education is a key factor in the failure of America's public education system to fulfill the intellectual, civic, and moral aims for which it was created. The book challenges the philosophical basis for the traditional common school model and defends the educational pluralism that most liberal democracies enjoy. Berner provides a unique theoretical pathway that is neither libertarian nor state-focused and a pragmatic pathway that avoids the winner-takes-all approach of many contemporary debates about education. For the first time in nearly one hundred fifty years, changing the underlying structure of America's public education system is both plausible and possible, and this book attempts to set out why and how.
Ashley Rogers Berner is Deputy Director of the Johns Hopkins Institute for Education Policy and Assistant Professor in the School of Education at Johns Hopkins University, USA. Berner is also Senior Fellow at the Center for the Study of Law and Religion at Emory University Law School, USA.
IntroductionChapter 1. Educational philosophies and why they matterChapter 2. Why political philosophy mattersChapter 3. American constitutions and religious schoolsChapter 4. Citizenship, achievement, and accountabilityChapter 5. The limits of educational pluralism and how to address themChapter 6. Changing the frame