ERIC Number: ED247167
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Jun
Reference Count: 0
Social Studies in U.S. Schools: A Response to a Paper by Fred M. Newmann.
Branson, Margaret Stimmann
There are ways to meet the need for social studies reform and revitalization other than adopting an "agenda of inquiry" which would incorporate the potentially appealing aspects of the radical perspective, as proposed by Fred M. Newmann. As a result of recent reform reports, many educators have already taken action to improve educational quality. For example, two reform proposals, the Carnegie Report and the Paideia Proposal, are being piloted in some school districts, and professional organizations in the social studies and the disciplines are attempting to influence what is happening in American schools. An agenda of inquiry, if defined as the process of active learning and critical thinking and discourse which will help students become more humane, insightful, and active citizens, is supported. There are, however, problems with trying to take a radical approach to education: (1) radicals begin with conclusions; (2) radical writing contains mystifying jargon and abstract and deterministic analyses; (3) teachers are not equipped to use the Socratic dialogue; and (4) teachers and academics are not the only ones who can make decisions about curriculum content and teaching methods. (RM)
Descriptors: Change Strategies, Curriculum Development, Decision Making, Educational Change, Educational Improvement, Educational Innovation, Educational Objectives, Educational Practices, Educational Quality, Elementary Secondary Education, Professional Associations, Social Studies, Teacher Education
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Radicalism; Reform Efforts
Note: For Newmann's paper, see SO 015 784. Paper presented at the Joint Meeting of the Social Science Education Consortium and the Bundeszentrale fur politische Bildung (Irsee, Bavaria, West Germany, June 18-22, 1984).