Schooling America: How the Public Schools Meet the Nations Changing Needs

Paperback | February 19, 2007

byPatricia Albjerg Graham

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In this informative volume, Patricia Graham, one of America's most esteemed historians of education, offers a vibrant history of American education in the last century. Drawing on a wide array of sources, from government reports to colorful anecdotes, Graham skillfully illustrates Americans'changing demands for our schools, and how schools have responded by providing what critics want, though never as completely or as quickly as they would like. In 1900, as waves of immigrants arrived, the American public wanted schools to assimilate students into American life, combining the basics of English and arithmetic with emphasis on patriotism, hard work, fair play, and honesty. In the 1920s, the focus shifted from schools serving a national needto serving individual needs; education was to help children adjust to life. By 1954 the emphasis moved to access, particularly for African-American children to desegregated classrooms, but also access to special programs for the gifted, the poor, the disabled, and non-English speakers. Now Americanswant achievement for all, defined as higher test scores. While presenting this intricate history, Graham introduces us to the passionate educators, scholars, and journalists who drove particular agendas, as well as her own family, starting with her immigrant father's first day of school and endingwith her own experiences as a teacher. Invaluable background in the ongoing debate on education in the United States, this book offers an insightful look at what the public has sought from its educational institutions, what educators have delivered, and what remains to be done.

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In this informative volume, Patricia Graham, one of America's most esteemed historians of education, offers a vibrant history of American education in the last century. Drawing on a wide array of sources, from government reports to colorful anecdotes, Graham skillfully illustrates Americans'changing demands for our schools, and how sch...

Patricia Albjerg Graham is the Charles Warren Research Professor of the History of American Education at Harvard University and formerly Director of the National Institute of Education, and president of the Spencer Foundation, the nation's leading funder of educational research.
Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 5 × 7.72 × 0.91 inPublished:February 19, 2007Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195315847

ISBN - 13:9780195315844

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"Graham has fashioned her book for a broad audience of scholars, policy analysts, policy makers, students, and the general public. Arguably, no one is better qualified to entice this variety of readers to consider education afresh. The prose and organization invite specialists and lay peoplealike to join the conversation on education history, policy, and practice she intends to stimulate. Graham charts the schools' repeated struggles to adjust and adapt, finds evidence of striking improvements over the century, and provides an analysis that could leave readers as hopeful as she is. Buta more lasting contribution may be the platform she has laid for future research. She identifies significant old business to be addressed anew regarding a fundamental institution of American democracy."--Donald Warren, Indiana University, History of Education Quarterly