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ERIC Number: EJ1080834
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1361-3324
"We Can't Let Them Fail for One More Day": School Reform Urgency and the Politics of Reformer-Community Alliances
Gordon, Hava Rachel
Race, Ethnicity and Education, v19 n1 p1-22 2016
This article provides a critical examination of neoliberal urgency in education reform. While critics of neoliberal reform policies have argued that these reforms exclude low-income community participation almost entirely, I argue that in practice this exclusion is not as total or as overt as macro-analyses would suggest. These macro analyses do not explain the complicated alliances that reformers have with some community organizations, nor do they specifically and critically examine the role that urgency plays in determining the value of community voice in school reform decisions. On the ground, elite school reformers forge tenuous alliances with select low-income community groups, while disregarding and marginalizing others. In this article, I posit that "urgency," a cherished ideal and guiding principle of the neoliberal school reform movement, becomes the mechanism for elite school reformers to distinguish "good" and valuable community allies from "backwards" and ignorant community voices. A critical examination of school reformer narratives in particular reveals that the discourse and practice of school reform urgency both legitimizes and hides a more profound exclusion of low-income African American voices from the school reform process.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A