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ERIC Number: EJ1046815
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: EISSN-2327-3607
In Defense of Foundations: An Open Letter to Deans
deMarrais, Kathleen
Critical Questions in Education, v4 n2 p118-129 Spr 2013
Kathleen deMarrais, professor in the Department of Lifelong Education, Administration and Policy at the University of Georgia, was honored to be invited to contribute to this special issue of "Critical Questions in Education." deMarrais addressed college/university deans to review the role of social foundations in teacher education and the hotly debated issue it has been since the founding of the first social foundations course in the 1930s. deMarrais points out that the field continues to be under attack with a need to defend and protect itself, in this case, perhaps from extinction. In these difficult economic times when states are cutting funding to higher education, today's university deans are unique in that they are under additional pressure from policymakers, corporate leaders, and a coterie of wealthy philanthropists--all who believe they understand what is wrong with public schools, the teaching profession, teacher education, and colleges of education. deMarrais recommends that education deans pause briefly to consider the value of social foundations, as well as contributions social foundations faculty can make to their college as a whole. Foundations scholars are trained across a broad range of social science disciplines, bringing the knowledge and tools of those disciplines to the study of education and schooling. Today's teachers, leaders, and other school personnel not only want and need the tools and techniques of their major fields, but the abilities to apply sociocultural, political, philosophic, and historical perspectives to their work, to reflect on the values and beliefs they hold, and to understand and engage with children and adults in communities in meaning, productive learning. To these ends, deMarrais urges deans to partner with their social foundations faculty in the leadership of the college and its programs. A bibliography is provided.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
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