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ERIC Number: ED133245
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1976
Reference Count: 0
The People and Their Schools. Fastback 79. Bicentennial Series.
Commager, Henry Steele
The need to involve the whole American society in education is stressed in this monograph. Education in the United States has a history of constantly attempting to accommodate the circumstances and demands of the New World. Although American education owes much to the Old World systems in areas of curriculum and stages of education, it exhibited early and decisive differences. The American system performed many services which were performed in other countries by the church, state, guilds, and families. The American secondary school trained boys for work, college, and "life," rather than strictly for university study. Often located in small towns, American colleges were small and simple, adopted open admission policies, and taught subjects which elsewhere were studied in secondary school. In the United States, all levels of education have taught conformity to the will of the democratic majority--a majority which was until quite recently a white, middle-class majority. Educational reformers, particularly during 1890-1910, suggested philosophies which schools should follow and specified functions which schools should fulfill. Results were that schools were required to do far more than they could do and they were deflected from those things they had done well in the past. Now, there is a need to bring American schools and the entire educational enterprise into harmony with the profound changes occurring in American life. (Author/DB)
Descriptors: American Culture, Conformity, Democratic Values, Educational History, Educational Objectives, Educational Philosophy, Educational Responsibility, Educational Sociology, Educational Trends, Elementary Secondary Education, Higher Education, Immigrants, Public Education, Relevance (Education), School Responsibility, School Role, Social Change, Social Influences, Socialization, United States History
Phi Delta Kappa, Eighth and Union, Box 789, Bloomington, Indiana 47401 ($0.50 paperback, discounts available)
Publication Type: Books
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Phi Delta Kappa, Bloomington, IN.