ERIC Number: EJ724971
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Forces for Failure and Genocide: The Plantation Model of Urban Educational Policy Making in St. Louis
Jones, Bruce Anthony
Educational Studies: Journal of the American Educational Studies Association, v37 n1 p2-24 2005
This article is about policy decision making and racial politics in the St. Louis, Missouri, school district. From a research standpoint, traditional policymaking models are inadequate for explaining the evolution of school reform events in St. Louis over the past year. Teachers, principals, school staff, and parents perceive themselves to be under siege by an external corporate entity. Within a 4-week period, this corporate entity shut down 16 schools (14 were in the predominantly northside African American neighborhoods); laid off teachers and principals, terminated maintenance, security, and food service staff; and outsourced whole service divisions. One high-performing African American school was shut down and sold to St. Louis University so that the university could bulldoze the school to build a basketball stadium. According to one parent interviewee, "We did not know what hit us." Table top theory and the plantation model of policy design, development, and implementation are used as conceptual and practical guides to detail the corporate takeover reform experiment in the St. Louis school district. This study demonstrates that policy practices that are detrimental to the well-being of African American children continue to plague African American communities. New methods for understanding why these policy practices continue require extensive discussion and a critical need for changing the way the powers that be interface with African American interests.
Descriptors: Educational Change, African American Children, School Restructuring, School Districts, Principals, Race, Educational Policy, Decision Making, Urban Areas, Well Being, Politics of Education
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Missouri