ERIC Number: ED481810
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Oct-8
Reference Count: N/A
Our History of Educational Freedom: What It Should Mean for Families Today. Policy Analysis.
Gryphon, Marie; Meyer, Emily A.
This paper examines the American tradition of educational freedom, following its ebb and flow at various points in history. America's ethos of educational freedom has always been strong, tied to its values of pluralism, tolerance, and free inquiry. However, its legacy of freedom has suffered repeated assaults by individuals and groups who wish to use state control over schooling to homogenize American culture. The paper examines more recent victories for educational freedom, such as the historic Supreme Court decision upholding school choice and the introduction of new school and choice programs around the country. It outlines the most critical additional freedoms that parents and families need in the areas of school choice, private school freedom, homeschooling, and religious neutrality, noting that school choice is legal, but not widespread, and opponents of educational freedom are threatening to smother existing private schools in a morass of new regulations, which would dictate everything from curriculum to staffing. It also asserts that an educational freedom agenda including choice for all families, religious neutrality, freedom for private schools, and protection for homeschooling families will ensure that educational freedom provides real benefits to families who are harmed by current policies. (Contains 187 endnotes.)(SM)
Descriptors: Academic Freedom, Civil Liberties, Democracy, Educational Legislation, Educational Policy, Elementary Secondary Education, Home Schooling, Intellectual Freedom, Private Schools, Public Schools, Racial Segregation, School Choice
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Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Cato Inst., Washington, DC.