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ERIC Number: EJ919117
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Mar
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 20
ISSN: ISSN-1477-8785
Magnet Schools, Innate Talent and Social Justice
Vopat, Mark C.
Theory and Research in Education, v9 n1 p59-72 Mar 2011
Beginning in the 1970s, many school US school districts reallocated their already scarce resources from local schools to specially created magnet schools. Many of these magnet schools have some sort of entrance exam, portfolio, or audition requirement that students must pass in order to gain admission. These selective magnet schools are predicated on the idea that there are certain students who have natural talents and abilities that justify their inclusion in these programs. Such programs are seen as simple meritocracies that look beyond race, gender, ethnicity or socio-economic to encourage the innate talent of certain individuals. It is the assumption that such innate talents exist that I take issue with in this article. The assumption that selective magnet schools are simply rewarding talent ignores the overwhelming amount of research that shows that talent is not innate, but is a combination of opportunity, encouragement, and deliberate practice. Based on this research, I argue that selective and competitive magnet schools are fundamentally unfair to students generally and constitute an unjust use of public resources. (Contains 5 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A