Privatizing Education: The Neoliberal Project To Re-Imagine America For Them, Not Us

In this 55 minute audio by U of Illinois scholar and activist Pauline Lippman, she explains how the bipartisan push to privatize education by starving existing public schools, introducing charter schools in the name of “choice” and destroying teacher unions is key to a radical re-fashioning of American society by our wealthy corporate elite, one that is disastrous for the rest of us, our communities and our children. Courtesy of KPFA's Against the Grain.

Against The Grain is a three times a week radio show on Berkeley's KPFK Radio.

1 Comment


This essay by Alfie Kohn in 2004 -@- lays out how NCLB [& now RTTT] & hi-stakes testing were/are Trojan horses [weapons] for dismantling public schools & teachers unions as a prelude to the corporate take over of public schools [so-called privatizing] via the so-called & Charter School 'movement' - in the name of 'freedom or choice'. He names people like Bill Bennett & the Heritage Foundation as having planned this for yrs / decades. This is relative to the neo-con / neo-liberal shock doctrine / free market doctrine that privatizing [corporatizing] every institution is automatically superior [for whom- the people or the heads of Corps???] to public [government] institutions.

Arne Duncan earlier this yr had the GALL to say that Katrina was the best thing to happen to New Orleans Schools!!! Where was the out-rage, why were there no demands for him to publicly apologize or even be fired!!! Katrina devastated New Orleans & left over 1000 people dead. It was a national disgrace [& international embarrassment] how the Bushites w Louisiana's Gov, & New Orleans Gov abandoned then attacked & slandered our people during the Katrina Disaster!!! How can Duncan make a statement like that & no-one in the MSNM media call him on it. Compare that to what happened to Van Jones in the fake / hyped up controversy by FOX Noise & Glen Beck. Result - first Mr Jones had to apologize for signing a 9-11 petition calling for a new investigation [DUH!], & then he was forced out.

Comment on these so-called ‘reformers’ of Public Education: What do the likes Arne Duncan, Paul Vallas, Bill Gates, the Waltons of Walmart, Mike Bloomberg, Michelle Rhee really know about education – particularly in the inner city? Except that they are politically connected / influential &/or wealthy - LITTLE!!! With the exception of Rhee, who is a woman of Korean decent – they are all white men from upper middle class / affluent back-grounds, w no real credentials / experience in education {including Duncan & Vallas – before they were politically appointed as ‘CEOs’ of CPS by Mayor Daley Jr, & Bloomberg a billion business-man who used his money to buy the mayor’s spot of NYC}, who all attended exclusive private schools {& presumably their children also}. Thus they have no real stake in or in-sight of the issues concerning inner-city public schools which they are pushing to {allegedly} ‘reform’- & nothing in common w Black & Brown inner-city children who attend those schools. Beware of these Greeks Bearing Gifts

All ideas that seem good on paper & in theory – may not be so in practice. IE: [based on personal experience] – In the IT Hi Tech age of: IBM, Dell, HP/Compaq, MicroSoft, Mac / Apple, & Oracle – there has been a push to integrate computer technology in the classroom. But this may not be a good idea in all cases. I witnessed a situation where a school outlined a curriculum for IT in the classroom for all grades [pre-school thru 7th]. But how practical is it to have a pre-schooler up to 1st [& even 2nd] grade, attending computer courses as a regular curriculum? Nearly all pre-schoolers & kindergarteners are just learning their ABCs & 123s – yet the computer keyboard assumes that the operator has mastered this. Further even 1st & 2nd graders are still learning spelling & basic vocabulary, grammar & sentence structure. And there is a way that the Qwerty Keyboard [not laid out in ABC order] is supposed to be manipulated via the ‘home-row keys, that would likely give even the average 2nd [& possibly 3rd] grader difficulty in manipulating correctly – because their hands are too small to operate the standard keyboard properly from its ‘home-row keys’; let alone the fact that while in these early grades they are learning ABC order but the Qwerty key-board is not in ABC order. From these facts one can logically conclude that formalized computer classes shouldn’t begin till at least 2nd or even 3rd grade- though models & pictures of computers can be introduced even in pre-school [just as models & pictures of power-tools, cars & planes are – but no one thinks it’s a good idea to let pre-schoolers & kindergarteners to even turn-on a power-tool, car or plane – let alone operate them.