ERIC Number: ED166076
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Oct-6
Reference Count: 0
A Sense of Courage.
Wirsing, Marie E.
The history of the United States is one of the contradictory traditions of human rights and intolerance. Although human rights, diversity, and dissidence are inherent concepts in our constitution and in the Supreme Court system, this tendency has been invariably accompanied by intolerant uses of power. The Salem witchcraft trials, the Alien and Sedition Acts, 19th century immigration laws, and the 20th century McCarthy era are the more obvious expressions of intellectual and cultural intolerance. Present manifestations of this tradition in the realm of education are more subtle. Current attitudes in areas of educational accountability, research, policy making, and instruction give priority to empirical research, knowledge objectification, and deterministic theories of human behavior. In one school district which has contracted with a highly structured and sequenced educational program, teachers are required to sign a three-year contract pledging loyalty to the program; if they do not, they are subject to transfer. These intolerant trends prompt the author to conclude that educational philosophers must exemplify the courage of intellectual inquiry, develop a sense of ethical responsibility within students, and draw attention to the ideological ramifications behind policy decisions. (KC)
Descriptors: Accountability, Authoritarianism, Behavior Theories, Behavioral Sciences, Civil Liberties, Competency Based Education, Competency Based Teacher Education, Conflict, Conventional Instruction, Dissent, Divergent Thinking, Dogmatism, Educational Attitudes, Educational Philosophy, Educational Policy, Educational Practices, Educational Problems, Educational Theories, Elementary Secondary Education, Higher Education, Humanistic Education, Humanization, Intellectual History, Learning Theories, Policy Formation, Programed Instruction, Social Studies, Student Responsibility, Teacher Responsibility, Trend Analysis
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at South Atlantic Philosophy of Education Society Conference (Columbia, South Carolina, October 6, 1978)