We speak with University of South Carolina law professor Derek Black about the history of education as a core government service and the current wave of voucher laws in red states. Professor Black argues that these will permanently reduce education funding levels and threaten the very existence of public schools. We also talk about the #RedforEd resistance and the need to substantially increase funding for schools with many low-income students. 

Overview

00:00-00:48 Intros

00:48-01:38 Why “Schoolhouse Burning” is subtitled “Public Education and the Assault on American Democracy”

01:38-03:38 Importance of Reconstruction for government role in education

03:38-06:13 Commitments to education in state constitutions

06:13-08:25 Tension between schools as reproducing social structures and vehicles for social mobility

08:25-16:35 How to achieve equity in school funding

16:35-18:49 Recent voucher laws around the U.S.

18:49-20:47 Vouchers and parochial schools

20:47-22:54 Impact of proliferation of charter schools

22:54-25:02 Why now for vouchers?

25:02-27:08 Why today’s battles over charters and vouchers are undermining the concept of public education

27:08-29:07 Libertarianism and the idea of removing government from education

29:07-30:19 Privatization and race

30:19-33:29 Reducing taxes on the wealthy and long-term reduction in public funding for education

33:29-36:23 Significance of #RedforEd teachers’ strikes

36:23-37:42 Low income parents and charters/vouchers

37:42-39:57 Building a movement that can fight against charter and voucher movements

39:57-42:27 Beyond funding, need for diverse schools 

42:27-45:31 Outro

Transcript

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Soundtrack by Poddington Bear