Local school boards have traditionally assigned the school that a child is to attend. Only by selecting their neighborhoods have parents exercised their choice of school. In recent years, this tradition has slowly given way to magnet schools, inter-district choice programs, charter schools, voucher programs, and many other forms of choice, creating a new environment for school decision making. At the same time, market concepts are under consideration for the recruitment and compensation of teachers and principals. As a result, the world of education is becoming more competitive. In a group of essays originally published in Education Next: A Journal of Opinion and Research, this book examines the likely promise and pitfalls of these changes in American education. Overall, these essays paint the picture of an education landscape that will be greatly shaped by choice and competition in the 21st century.
In these 21 articles contributors wrestle with such issues as the profit motive and whether it will benefit kids, deregulation of entry into the teaching profession, making teacher pay more competitive, the belief that teacher unions stifle reform, and the ever-increasing pressures to create charter schools, use school voucher program, contract schools out, increase home schooling, and sell supplemental services. They also take a hard look at school choice after No Child Left Behind.
This collection of essays explores how market concepts have been applied to education as a means of school reform. The authors question whether teachers and principals would be more effective if their training, recruitment, compensation, and retention were deregulated, and debate the merits and shortcomings of school choice options such as charter schools, vouchers, and home schooling.
Paul E. Peterson is Henry Lee Shattuck Professor of Government and director of the Program on Education Policy and Governance at Harvard University, and Editor-In-Chief of Education Next: A Journal of Opinion and Research. Peterson is the author or editor over one hundred articles and twenty books and is a former director of the Center for American Political Studies at Harvard University and of the Governmental Studies program at the Brookings Institution.
Chapter 1 The Private Can Be Public Chapter 2 The Costs of Privatization Chapter 3 Regulations Do More Harm than Good Chapter 4 In Defense of Regulation Chapter 5 We Need New Types of Administrators Chapter 6 New Leaders: Will Public Schools Hire Them? Chapter 7 Fringe Benefits: AFT and NEA Teacher Salary Surveys Chapter 8 Low Pay, Low Quality Chapter 9 he Case for Merit Pay Chapter 10 Wage Compression and the Decline in Teacher Quality Chapter 11 A Union by Any Other Name Chapter 12 Reform Unionism Is Here Chapter 13 Charter Schools: Mom and Pops or Corporate Design Chapter 14 Charter-School Politics Chapter 15 A School Built for Horace: Tales from a Start-up Charter School Chapter 16 The Impact of Vouchers on Student Performance Chapter 17 Do Vouchers and Charters Push Public Schools to Improve? Chapter 18 School Choice and Social Cohesion Chapter 19 How Vouchers Came to D. C. Chapter 20 Contracting Out: The Story behind Philadelphia's Edison Contract Chapter 21 Home Schooling: The Nation's Fastest-growing Education Sector Chapter 22 School Choice in No Child Left Behind Chapter 23 Selling Supplemental Services