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Urban Justice

Education

“How to Fix the Country’s Failing Schools and How Not to”
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/10/opinion/sunday/how-to-fix-the-countrys-failing-schools-and-how-not-to.html

 

“Expanding Community College Access”
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/15/opinion/expanding-community-college-access.html

 

Bergstrom, Ylva. "The Universal Right To Education: Freedom, Equality And "Fraternity." Studies In Philosophy And Education 29.2 (2010): 167-182.
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The overall aim of the article is to analyze how the universal right to education have been built, legitimized and used. And more specifically ask who is addressed by the universal right to education, and who is given access to rights and to education. The first part of the article focuses on the history of declarations, the notion of the universal right to education, emphasizing differences in matters of detail--for example, the meaning of "compulsory", "children's rights" or "parents' rights"--and critically examining the right of the child and the right of the parent in terms of tensions between "social rights" and "private autonomy rights". Despite differences in detail, the iterations of the universal right to education do share to the full in the idea of education as such. In the second part the attempt to scrutinize the underlying assumptions legitimizing the consensus on education, focusing again on the notion of the child. In conclusion I argue that a certain notion of what it is to be a human being is inscribed within the circle of access to rights and education. These notions of what it means to be a child, a parent, a citizen or a member of the "human family" are notions of enlightenment and humanity and, to my understanding, aspects of how democracy is configured around freedom, equality and fraternity.

 

Giroux, Henry, and Chronis Polychroniou. "Higher Education Without Democracy?." Tikkun 23.6 (2008): 44-45.
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The article discusses the state of higher education in the U.S. The world of American higher education is becoming increasingly divided: Even as some institutions educate the elite to rule the world, others are training students for low-paid positions in the capitalist world economy. It is increasingly apparent that the university in America has become a social institution that fails to address inequality in society and contributes to a growing division between social classes.
 

Rathke, Wade. "Is Education Advancing Inequality Rather Than Opportunity?." Social Policy 44.2 (2014): 76.
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The author offers insights on the possible link between education systems and inequality in the U.S. Topics explored include an article on charter schools published in the March 2014 issue of "The Atlantic" journal, the opposition expressed by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie to charter school operations, issues relating to the segregation of low-income students, and the observed inability of higher education institutions to adapt to students' potential and needs.

 

Pöllänen, Iida. "Finland: Perhaps The World's Best Education System." Skipping Stones 24.4 (2012): 20.
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The article focuses on the education system of Finland. The author stated that top scores have been achieved by Finnish students in international tests every year. Social equality is the basis of Finnish education as they believe that quality education is the right of every student irrespective of the country. Their teachers are well-qualified.

 

Weinberg, Steven. "Inherited Opportunity." Atlantic Nov. 2007: 33+.
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The author focuses on the aspect of self-improvement and equality in spite of socioeconomic differences, which are part of the American dream. The author is concerned that the quality of public education is low and leaves students at a disadvantage among affluent peers. Other concerns include tax cuts for the rich and the widening earnings gap.

 

Investor's Business, Daily. "Education: The Real Inequality Barrier." Investors Business Daily 06 May 2015: A14.
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The article focuses on the rising concerns about the occurrence of inequality in the educational and employment system in the U.S. It states that the state is experiencing slow economic improvement driven by unemployment decline and modest gains in job creation. However, majority of those jobs went to individuals with bachelor's degree.

 

Rothstein, Richard. "Whose Problem Is Poverty?." Educational Leadership 65.7 (2008): 8.
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The article discusses how school improvement and educational reforms that counter socioeconomic factors can reduce the achievement gap in U.S. schools. The author notes how low-income students have a lower academic performance than average students and comments that some educators refuse to recognize the role that social and economic disparities have in student performance or stress either school improvement or social reforms. He suggests that providing children with adequate health and dental care, increasing amounts of earned income tax credits, creating more mixed-income housing and establishing after-school activities for children in urban schools can help promote equality in education.

 

Stiglitz, Joseph E. "Conclusion: Slow Growth And Inequality Are Political Choices. We Can Choose Otherwise." Washington Monthly 46.11/12 (2014): 39-41.
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The author reflects on what Americans can do to address the slow economic growth and inequality instead of calling it a "politics of envy." He points out how the debate on inequality in America is about the nature of the society and its long-held belief of being a middle-class society. He suggests spending more on providing better education to the poor and investing in an economic system that ensures access to jobs with decent pay and better health care instead of on prisons and the military.