In this posting, David Randall, author of Making Citizens: How American Universities Teach Civics, argues that civic life in America has benefited by abundant forms of civic participation and active citizenship is a welcome part of public life, but it doesn't belong in schools. Teachers cannot include civic practice since all are equally qualified to act as citizens by virtue of turning 18.
Recently in teaching Category
February 02, 2017
October 25, 2016
Democracy schools in America were associated with the "common school movement," embodying ideals of a "commonwealth" created and sustained by people in communities. As people made the commonwealth -- and its common schools -- they became invested in the commonwealth as a counterweight to private wealth. Can we do this again? If so, how did you rebuild a sense of ownership and connections in communities with the schools you were involved with?
October 18, 2016
What's democracy got to do with teaching? Deborah Meier asked. A lot - including the nature of pedagogy and the identity of teachers who teach love of ideas, the importance of evidence, and the importance of public relationships with other adults, teachers and parents.
January 20, 2015
Meier: I'm against all choice methods that give the school the right to choose rather than the students and families.
January 08, 2015
Nathan: You refer to some charters as more like a chain. The majority of charters are independent. But, yes, some of them are part of a group. Would you regard Coalition of Essential Schools, or Core Knowledge, or Montessori schools as "chain" schools?
January 06, 2015
Meier: When looking at charter schools what I mostly see are chains operating more like Wal-Marts than mom-and-pop stores, with authority more distant from the children and families.
December 18, 2014
Casey: 'At a time that teachers' unions face existential threats, how do we defend the democratic voice that they provide teachers?'
December 16, 2014
Meier: Do most teachers view their unions much as they view other organizations--some better, some worse, but not "ours."
December 09, 2014
Meier: What are the lessons in equality that young people absorb through the structuring of schools, and how do they match the "civics" lessons they may be receiving formally?
November 20, 2014
Casey: No one becomes a teacher to become rich. We do so out of a vocation, a calling to educate and care for young people.