Amy Lueck: How High Schools Shaped the U.S. and Built Communities with Shared Values

Diane Ravitch's blog

Amy Lueck writes in this article about the role of the high school in shaping American society and building a sense of community, an understanding that these children are OUR children.

She begins:

In 2016, shortly after she was appointed to the position, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos declared American public schools a “dead end.” Instead, DeVos advocates for “school choice,” code for charter schools, vouchers, and other privatization efforts.

Families who have watched their local schools struggle might agree with DeVos, but her characterization is still troubling. It reflects a distrust of education as a communal goal, not just an individual one. That’s a big change from the objective of American public schools during their first two centuries. Far from being a “dead end,” for a long time the public school—particularly the public high school—served an important civic purpose: not only as an academic training ground, but also…

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