The Education Of The United States

1575 WordsFeb 17, 20177 Pages
In the two hundred forty-one years since the founding of the United States, few have seriously argued the importance of education to society. Although education was left out of the United States Constitution in the interest of states’ rights, Thomas Jefferson was not alone in believing that “the most important bill in our whole code is that for the diffusion of knowledge among the people… [which is necessary] for the preservation of freedom and happiness.” (251). Despite a consensus on the necessity of education, its actualization has a storied past, one riddled with intense ideological debates, landmark court cases, petty politics, and, at times, military intervention (e.g. during desegregation). While lawmakers and judges have addressed…show more content…
Next, I will outline key elements of Amy Gutmann’s “Democratic State of Education,” including nonrepressionism and freedom in choosing among “competing conceptions of good life and good society.” Once this framework is in place, I will proceed to explore the perceived incompatibility of Common Core with the principles of Gutmann’s Democratic State. Ultimately, I will conclude that the standards are indeed compatible with a Democratic State of Education given the latitude that states have in tailoring the standards and given the fact that Common Core does not exclusively determine curriculum. The Common Core State Standards are the contrivance of a commission of governors and education leaders from forty-eight states sponsored by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers. The overarching goals of the commission in drafting the standards were to “ensure that all students have the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in college, career, and life… regardless of where they live,” and to “promote equity by ensuring all students are well prepared to collaborate and compete with their peers in the United States and abroad.” In essence, the standards were created to correct for geographical disparities in educational quality which had made for unequal opportunities available to students after graduation. Two separate sections of Common Core Standards, “English Language Arts & Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science,
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