Originally published 02/08/2013
Barbara J. Miner is a Milwaukee-based journalist who has covered education for more than 20 years. She is author of the newly released book Lessons from the Heartland: A Turbulent Half-Century of Public Education in an Iconic American City (New York: New Press)....Before the mid-1990s, the term “failing schools” was all but nonexistent. It certainly, for instance, was not applied to Jim Crow-era segregated black schools in the South that could not even afford desks.What’s more, the first use of vouchers was not by poor black parents but by whites hoping to escape desegregation. From 1959 until 1964, when federal courts intervened, officials closed all the public schools in Prince Edward County, Virginia rather than comply with orders to desegregate. White parents took advantage of publicly funded vouchers to attend a newly created private, whites-only academy.Such an association between vouchers and white supremacy is not useful to today’s voucher advocates. Instead, vouchers have been repackaged as a way to improve academic achievement and to expand parent “choice.” But after more than 20 years, one of the clearest lessons from Milwaukee is that vouchers, above all, are a way to funnel public tax dollars out of public schools and into private schools. Vouchers, at their core, are an abandonment of public education....
- What Happened to the Plan to Put Harriet Tubman on the $20 Bill?
- What Does Invoking The 25th Amendment Actually Look Like?
- Paul Allen’s team finds wreck of storied USS Helena, torpedoed in 1943
- Israel Celebrates Its 70th Israeli Style: With Rancor and Bickering
- ‘One last time’: Barbara Bush had already faced a death more painful than her own
- Mary Beard cut from US version of “Civilisations"
- Timothy Garton Ash: "We have six months to foil Brexit. And here’s how we can do it.”
- Why the Pulitzer Prize committee keeps ignoring women’s history
- No, we're not reliving the 1960s, says Harvard historian Arne Westad
- 2018 Pulitzers in History, Biography and Nonfiction Go to ...