My Foundations of Education

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My Foundations of Education by Mind Map: My Foundations of Education

1. School as Organizations

1.1. Few professions are as demanding as teaching. Teachers must be skilled in so many areas of technical expertise and human relations. In their book, The Complex Roles of the Teacher: An Ecological Perspective (1984), Heck and Williams describe the many roles that teachers are expected to play in their professional lives. Those roles include colleague, friend, nurturer of the learner, facilitator of learning, researcher, program developer, administrator, decision maker, professional leader, and community activist. This is a daunting list and it leaves out the most important role of the teacher: the caring, empathetic, well-rounded person that can act as a role model to students, parents, and other professionals.

1.2. Lieberman and Miller (1984) have explored what they call "the social realities of teaching." Through their research, they have been able to identify elements of the teaching experience that give it its unique flavor. According to Lieberman and Miller, the central contradiction of teaching is that teachers have to deal with a group of students and teach them something and, at the same time, deal with each child as an individual. The teachers, then, have two missions: one universal and cognitive, and the other particular and effective. Teachers, according to Lieberman and Miller, are best viewed as craftspeople and most of the craft is learned on the job. Teaching is a somewhat messy and personal undertaking.

1.3. Few professions are as simultaneously routinized and creative as teaching. Good teachers are creators. They take the dailiness of teaching and turn it into a special event. A great teacher can turn a mundane lesson into an exciting, intellectual voyage, and a poor teacher can make students reject learning altogether. Certainly, most good teachers genuinely like their students, have a commitment to their subject matter, are reasonably orderly in terms of their classroom organization, and have at least a working sense of humor.

1.4. Sociologist Dan Lortie (1975) argues that teaching, particularly elementary school teaching, is only partially professionalized. When he compared elementary school teacher to other professionals, he found that the prerequisites for professionalism among elementary school teachers were vaguely defined or absent altogether. There is, in Lortie's words, "an incomplete subculture." Teacher socialization is very limited compared to other professions and there is little evidence that the socialization processes associated with becoming a teacher are highly professionalized or represent standards of behavior congruent with other professions.

1.5. Educational researcher Linda M. McNeil (1988b) has written about what she calls the contradictions of control. She pointed out that "in theory, a bureaucratic design of schools frees teachers to teach by assigning to administrators and business managers the duties of keeping the school 'under control.'" But, as McNeil indicated, when so much attention is placed on keeping things under control, the educational purposes of the school can diminish in importance and teachers can begin to be part of a controlling process rather than an instructional one.

1.6. Clearly, Lortie and McNeil are pointing to a set of contradictions within the teaching profession that makes genuine professional autonomy a difficult goal to attain. On one hand, teachers are expected to be autonomous, thoughtful experts in education. On the other hand, the conditions of their employment leave little scope for autonomy, thoughtfulness, or expertise. Perhaps none of this would really matter if the compromise between the norms of professionalism and the norms of bureaucracy did not lead to a kind of intellectual and moral paralysis among many teachers. Trying to be a professional and a bureaucrat, while at the same time trying to fulfill the many roles of a teacher, is a task that cannot be reasonably fulfilled by most people.

2. Curriculum and Pedagogy

2.1. The humanist curriculum reflects the idealist philosophy that knowledge of the traditional liberal arts is the cornerstone of an educated citizenry and that the purpose of education is to present to students the best of what has been thought and written. Traditionally, this curriculum focused on the Western heritage as the basis for intellectual development, although some who support this type of curriculum argue that the liberal arts need not focus exclusively on the Western tradition.

2.2. The curriculum model dominated nineteen-century and early twentieth- century U.S. education and was codified in the National Education Association's Committee of Ten report issued in 1893, " which recommended that all secondary students, regardless of whether they intended to go to college, should be liberally educated and should study English, foreign languages, mathematics, history, and science."

2.3. The developmentalist curriculum is related to the needs and interests of the students rather than the needs of society. This curriculum emanated from the aspects of Dewey's writings related to the relationship between the child and the curriculum, as well as developmental psychologists such as Piaget, and it emphasized the process of teaching as well as its content. This philosophically progressive approach to teaching was student centered and was concerned with relating the curriculum to the needs and interests of each child at particular developmental stages.

2.4. The developmentalist curriculum stressed flexibility in both what was being taught and how it was taught, with the emphasis on the development of each student's individual capacities. Moreover, the developmental curriculum stressed the importance of relating schooling to the life experiences of each child in a way that would make education come alive in a meaningful manner. The teacher, from this perspective, was not a transmitter of knowledge but rather a facilitator of student growth.

2.5. The mimetic tradition is based on the viewpoint that the purpose of education is to transmit specific knowledge to students. Thus, the bet method of doing this id through what is termed the dialect method, a method that commonly relies on the lecture or presentation as the main form of communication. At the heart of this tradition is the assumption that the educational process involves the relationship between the knower (the teacher) and the learner (the student), and that education is a process of transferring information from one to the other. Based on the belief that the student does not posses what the teacher has, the mimetic model stresses the importance of rational sequencing in the teaching process and assessment of the learning process.

2.6. *Alabama State Sentors: Luther Strange and Richard Shelby *Alabama United States House of Representatives: Bradley Byrne, Martha Roby, Mike Rogers, Robert Aderholt, Mo Brooks, Gary Palmer, Terri Sewell STATE SUPERINTENDENT: Thomas "Tommy" Bice * STATE SCHOOL BOARD REPRESENTATIVES: Al Thompson, Betty Peters, Stephanie Bell, Yvette Richardson, Ella Bell, Cynthia McCarty, Jeff Newman, Mary Hunter * LOCAL SUPERINTENDENT: Cindy Wigley * LOCAL SCHOOL BOARD: Marshall County Board of Education.

3. Educational Reform

3.1. In the 1980s and 1990s and into the twenty-first century were periods of significant debate and reform in U.S. education. Beginning in 1983, with the National Commission on Educational Excellence's report A Nation at Rsk, government leaders, educational reformers, teacher organizations, administrators, and various other interest groups attempted to improve the quality of U.S. schools.

3.2. In the 1980s, the major reform actors shifted from the federal to the state to the local levels. In the 1990s and 2000s, President Clinton's Goals 2000, President Bush's No Child Left Behind (NCLB), and President Obama's Race to the Top (RTT) placed the federal government back at the forefront of educational policy.

3.3. Goals 2000 was a direct outgrowth of the state-led education reform agenda of the 1980s, which included increasing high school graduation requirements, particularly in math and science, instituting statewide testing programs, offering more Advanced Placement courses, promoting the use of technology in the classroom, and instituting new teacher evaluation programs.

3.4. No Child Left Behind represented a logical extension of a standards movement that tossed the left's critique of U.S. education back on itself. Based on the critique that U.S. education has historically underserved low-income and minority children through curriculum tracking, poor instruction, and low-quality teachers in urban schools, NCLB mandates the uniform standards for all students in order to reduce and eventually eliminate the social class and race achievement gap by 2014.

3.5. Created by President Barack Obama, the primary goal of Race to the Top was to aide states in meeting the various components of NCLB. The initial legislation provided $4.35 billion for a competitive grant program that awards states for improving student outcomes and closing achievement gaps by developing plans in four education reform areas.

3.6. First, through its influential report, A Nation at Risk, written during the tenure of Secretary Terrel Bell, and second through his successor William Bennett's use of his office as a "bully pulpit," the U.S. Department of Education played a significant role in keeping the pressure on states and localities to improve educational outcomes, which for Secretary Bennett defined the goals of educational reform.

4. History of U.S. Education

4.1. The Post-World War II Equity Era: 1945-1980

4.1.1. Equity and Excellence

4.2. Pedagogical Progressivism v.s Pedagogical Traditionalism

4.3. Chief Justice Earl Warren

4.3.1. Included

4.3.2. Included

4.3.3. Excluded

4.4. Brown v. Topeka Board of Education

4.5. Conservative Perspectives

4.6. The Age of Reform: The Rise of the Common School

4.7. Horace Mann

5. Equality of Opportunity

5.1. The field of special education has mirrored the debates about equality of educational opportunity and the concern with the appropriate placement of students with special educational needs. Beginning in the late 1960s, parents of children with special needs (including physical and learning disabilities) began to put pressure on the educational system to serve there children more appropriately.

5.2. Skrtic (1991), in a comprehensive essay in Harvard Educational Review, analyzed the relationship between the organizational structure of public education and the bureaucratization of special education since 1975. Arguing that theorganizational procedures of special education had resulted in a system that was often concerned more with its own perpetuation than with the needs of students, Skrtic argued for reform of the entire system to ensure proper placement and education.

5.3. By the mid-1980s, the efficacy of the law became a critical issue for policy makers and advocates of the disabled. Critics argued that despite its good intentions, the law produced adverse effects, such as the over-identification of students with handicapping conditions, the failure of special education students to make it back into the mainstream, and the over-representation of minority students in special education classes. In the late 1980s, critics of special education pushed the regular education initiative (REI), which called for mainstreaming children with disabilities into regular classes. The REI called for inclusion of almost all children into the mainstream, which many critics argued would result in chaos and the inability to educate mainstream children effectively.

5.4. Today the field of special education remains in conflict. The field of disability studies has emerged to challenge convention theories in the field. Disability studies theorists argue that handicapping conditions are for the most part socially constructed and although there may be cognitive differences at the polar ends, the vast majority of children labelled as handicapped can be better served in mainstream settings. Criticism, especially for the growing fields of neuro and cognitive sciences, argue that there are real cognitive differences among children and that students often need separate special education placement.

5.5. The controversies over REI and EHA continue. As we move ahead into the twenty-first century, it is imperative that educational researchers provide empirical evidence to inform placement decisions. It is clear that far too many students have been labeled and placed into special education classes and that, for many, these classes have resulted in lifetime sentences that have limited their educational opportunities. What is needed is a flexible system that provides appropriate placements for students with special needs: an inclusion class for those who can function within it and a special class for students whose needs require a separate placement.

5.6. In 1975, Congress passed the Education of All Handicapped Children Law (EHA) which included six basic principals: 1) the right of access to public education programs; 2) the individualization of services; 3) the principals of "least restrictive environment"; 4) the scope of broadened services to be provided by the schools and a set of procedures for determining them; 5) the general guidelines for identifying disability; and 6) the principals of primary state and local responsibilities. The purpose of the law was to guarantee that children with special needs were properly identified and placed in appropriate classes, defined as the "least restrictive environment."

6. Educational Inequality

6.1. Genetic differences - The most controversial student centered explanation is the genetic or biological argument. From a sociological and anthropological perspective, biological explanations of human behavior are viewed as limited because social scientists believe that environmental social factors are largely responsible for human behavior.

6.2. Cultural deprivation theories - These theories were popularized in the 1960s suggested that working class and nonwhite families often lack the cultural resources, such as books and other educational stimuli, and thus arrive at school at a significant disadvantage. Moreover, drawing on this thesis advanced by anthropologist Oscar Lewis (1966) about poverty in Mexico, cultural deprivation theorist assert that the poor have a deprives culture - one that lacks the value system of middle class culture.

6.3. Cultural differences theories - Cultural difference theories agree that there are cultural and family differences between working class and nonwhite students, and white middle class students. Working class and nonwhite students may indeed arrive at school with different cultural dispositions and without the skills and attitudes required by the schools. This is not due to deficiencies in their home life but rather to being a part of an oppressed minority. The key difference in this perspective is that although cultural difference theorist acknowledge the impact of student differences, they do not blame working class and nonwhite families for educational problems. Rather, they attribute cultural differences to social forces such as poverty, racism, discrimination, and unequal life chances.

6.4. School financing - Public schools are financed through a combination of revenues from local, state, and federal sources. However, the majority of funds come from state and local taxes, with local property taxes a significant source. Thus, more affluent communities are able to provide more per-pupil spending than poorer districts, often at a proportionately less burdensome rate than in poorer communities. This unequal funding has been the subject of considerable legal attack by communities that argue that funding based on local property taxes is discriminatory under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and that it denies equality of opportunity.

6.5. Gender and schooling - Although the feminist movement in the United States dates back at least to the mid-nineteenth century, the second wave of feminism began in the 1960s. Influenced by the French feminist Simone de Beauvoir (1952) and reacting to the narroly defined gender roles of the 1950s, feminists in the 1960s and 1970s challenged the view that biology is destiny. Vivian Gornick (1987) in her poignant essay "The Next Great Moment in History is Theirs," argued that differences between men and women are cultural, not biological, and that women deserve in the public and private spheres of life (the family and the workplace).

6.6. Curriculum and ability grouping - Not only are there significant differences in educational achievement between schools but within schools as well. The fact that different groups of students in the same schools preform very differently suggests that there may be school characteristics affecting those outcomes. Ability grouping and curriculum grouping (often referred to as tracking by ability or curriculum tracking) is an important educational component of U.S. schooling.

7. Philosophy of Education

7.1. Pragmatism

7.1.1. Dependencies

7.1.2. Milestones

7.2. Key researchers: George Sanders Peirce, William James, John Dewey, Francis Bacon, John Locke, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau

7.2.1. Schedule

7.2.2. Budget

7.3. John Dewey

7.3.1. KPI's

7.4. Dewey's Pragmatism: instrumentalism and esperimentalism

7.5. "Dialect of Freedom"

7.6. Problem-solving or inquiry method

7.7. Integrated curriculum

8. Sociological Perspectives

8.1. Interactional Theories

8.2. Basil Bernstein

8.3. Teacher Behavior

8.3.1. Rita Pierson

8.4. Education and Inequality

8.5. Student Peer Groups and Alienation

8.6. The Politics of Culture: Understanding Local Political Resistance to Detracking in Racially Mixed Schools. By: Amy Stuart Wells and Irene Serna

9. Politics of Education

9.1. The Neo-Liberal and Conservative Perspective

9.2. Traditional Vision of Education

9.3. The Reagan Philosophy - stressing individual initiative

9.4. Ronald Reagan's Presidential Address to the Nation on Education

9.5. Diane Ravitch

9.6. A Nation At Risk (ANAR)