Students will explore the historical foundations of education and, in particular, American perspectives on equal opportunity, access, and merit. Social class and economic status have continued to create division in the United States. Students will explore how these social lines relate to educational opportunity, achievement, demographic group stability, and mobility. Topics may include: historical foundations including Supreme Court case rulings, policy, educational initiatives like No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, and Common Core, disparities in school-funding, the increased call for accountability, and the reliance on standardized assessments. Students will critically reflect on the degree to which our education system is succeeding in preparing students as educated citizens, to what degree current practices and policies are helping or hindering equal educational access to all citizens, and how all of these forces influence the ideal of the American Dream.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.