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ERIC Number: EJ970039
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0190-2946
When Billionaires Become Educational Experts
Kumashiro, Kevin K.
Academe, v98 n3 May-Jun 2012
For years, critics have pointed to the decreasing ability of health-care professionals to make decisions and provide services because of the demands of insurance companies and health-management organizations to sustain profits. Health-care decisions are increasingly being made by the wrong people and for the wrong reasons. So, too, with public education. Current reforms are allowing certain individuals with neither scholarly nor practical expertise in education to exert significant influence over educational policy for communities and children other than their own. They, the millionaires and billionaires from the philanthropic and corporate sectors, are experimenting in urban school districts with educational reform initiatives that are not grounded in sound research and often fail to produce results. And yet, with funding for public education shrinking, the influence of these wealthy reformers is growing. The roles of business and philanthropy have shifted, reconfigured, and converged over the past century, and therefore seeing the bigger picture of public education requires understanding the interrelated histories of philanthropic and corporate influence. As the United States neared the end of the twentieth century, the globalizing economy provided fertile ground for an unprecedented accumulation of wealth by the corporate elite. Taking this new wealth and the lessons learned about leveraging wealth for both increased profits and political influence, several millionaires and billionaires transformed the landscape of philanthropy, developing new organizations that operate much more like the conservative foundations than traditional philanthropies. These are the venture philanthropists that push for the privatization of public education. (Contains 7 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States