Beacon Press: Twenty-First-Century Jim Crow Schools
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Twenty-First-Century Jim Crow Schools

The Impact of Charters on Public Education

Authors: Raynard Sanders, David Stovall, Terrenda White   Foreword by: Karen Lewis

How charter schools have taken hold in three cities—and why parents, teachers, and community members are fighting back

Charter schools once promised a path towards educational equity, but as the authors of this powerful volume show, market-driven education reforms have instead boldly reestablished a tiered public school system that segregates students by race and class. Examining the rise of charters in New Orleans, Chicago, and New York, authors Raynard Sanders, David Stovall, and Terrenda White show how charters—private institutions, usually set in poor or working-class African American and Latinx communities—promote competition instead of collaboration and are driven chiefly by financial interests. Sanders, Stovall, and White also reveal how corporate charters position themselves as “public” to secure tax money but exploit their private status to hide data about enrollment and salaries, using misleading information to promote false narratives of student success.

In addition to showing how charter school expansion can deprive students of a quality education, the authors document several other lasting consequences of charter school expansion:

   • the displacement of experienced African American teachers
   • the rise of a rigid, militarized pedagogy such as SLANT
   • the purposeful starvation of district schools
   • and the loss of community control and oversight

A revealing and illuminating look at one of the greatest threats to public education, Twenty-First-Century Jim Crow Schools explores how charter schools have shaped the educational landscape and why parents, teachers, and community members are fighting back.
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Twenty-First-Century Jim Crow Schools is both a social autopsy of catastrophic and fraudulent charter school initiatives in three American cities and a helpful guidebook for those of us engaged in the gathering struggle to save our public schools. It’s a torch against the darkness, an antidote to cynicism and despair, and a map to move the movement forward. With this little book the forces determined to destroy public education—with mobilized campaigns to disinvest and destabilize, displace and disenfranchise—have met a formidable opponent. As participatory democracy is repeatedly assailed, as the public space is systematically eroded and eclipsed, and as the very concept of something we might call a ‘public’ is flogged by the powerful in favor of ruthless meritocracy and fanatical individualism, we who believe in freedom must rise up, reimagine, and revitalize the public square. Raynard Sanders, David Stovall, and Terrenda White have given us an essential tool in the fight ahead.”
—William Ayers, coauthor of “You Can’t Fire the Bad Ones!”: And 18 Other Myths About Teachers, Teachers’ Unions, and Public Education

“Excellent, cogent arguments against the corporatization of the charter school movement, which started as a way to have community- and teacher-led schools that served the needs of poor black and brown children . . . demonstrat[ing] how the original intent has been usurped by a greedy, oligarchical class intent on tapping into the $600 billion in taxpayer funds that should be used for spending on public schools.”
—Karen Lewis

FOREWORD by Karen Lewis

The New Orleans Public Education Experiment: Children Lose—Education Reformers Win

Charter Schools and the Event of Educational Sharecropping: An Alternate Take on the Chicago Phenomenon

From Community Schools to Charter Chains: New York’s Unequal Educational Landscape


Twenty-First-Century Jim Crow Schools

ISBN: 978-080707606-4
Publication Date: 4/3/2018
Size:6 x 9 Inches (US)
Price:  $17.00
Format: Paperback
Availability: In stock.