Individual Presentation or Panel Title

The Call to Illuminate: Bolstering the Bulwarks of Public Schools and Public Education

Abstract

These are dangerous times (Giroux, 2010, 2015). With regard to the current war on public education, the purpose of this proposal is to call for the illumination and further exploration of our founding father’s complex perspectives on public education and their relevance to the contemporary technologically-mediated educational discourses. This presentation seeks to demonstrate the importance of re-politicizing and historicizing public education with particular emphasis on defending public schools and public school teachers. My colleague and I approach this topic with attention to the corporatized war on education waged by wayward conservatives and centrist democrats. We explore these battle lines while juxtaposing the stance of governors in states such as Georgia, Texas, and North Carolina with that of the nation’s founders. In this presentation, my colleague and I voice our particular concern for the use of digital technologies to pitch ideals and values - both subversive and quotidian - as utilized by politicians, entertainers, celebrities, bullies and incendiaries, increasingly, with purpose to “empower the strong and disempower the weak” (Morozov, 2011, p. xvii). We propose this presentation, therefore, as a counter-narrative seeking to draw attention to the historic conflict over the purposes and the continued importance of public schools. In the context of emancipatory democracy (Friere, 2009), educators must cultivate in their students the critical consciousness to, as Jefferson wrote, “illuminate, as far as practicable, the minds of the people at large” (in Labaree, 2010, p. 50). This is the purpose of education in a continually aspiring democracy.

Presentation Description

In light of our role as public intellectuals, teachers must embody the professional obligation to support and educate all children in the name of democracy. In this complicated era, we must remind ourselves that education is about re-imagining and/or re-creating a new and better way of life, not replicating tradition or sliding back toward what once was.

Keywords

Defense of public education, Critical theory; Curriculum inquiry

Location

Talmadge

Publication Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

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Jun 10th, 11:00 AM Jun 10th, 12:15 PM

The Call to Illuminate: Bolstering the Bulwarks of Public Schools and Public Education

Talmadge

These are dangerous times (Giroux, 2010, 2015). With regard to the current war on public education, the purpose of this proposal is to call for the illumination and further exploration of our founding father’s complex perspectives on public education and their relevance to the contemporary technologically-mediated educational discourses. This presentation seeks to demonstrate the importance of re-politicizing and historicizing public education with particular emphasis on defending public schools and public school teachers. My colleague and I approach this topic with attention to the corporatized war on education waged by wayward conservatives and centrist democrats. We explore these battle lines while juxtaposing the stance of governors in states such as Georgia, Texas, and North Carolina with that of the nation’s founders. In this presentation, my colleague and I voice our particular concern for the use of digital technologies to pitch ideals and values - both subversive and quotidian - as utilized by politicians, entertainers, celebrities, bullies and incendiaries, increasingly, with purpose to “empower the strong and disempower the weak” (Morozov, 2011, p. xvii). We propose this presentation, therefore, as a counter-narrative seeking to draw attention to the historic conflict over the purposes and the continued importance of public schools. In the context of emancipatory democracy (Friere, 2009), educators must cultivate in their students the critical consciousness to, as Jefferson wrote, “illuminate, as far as practicable, the minds of the people at large” (in Labaree, 2010, p. 50). This is the purpose of education in a continually aspiring democracy.