An all-out assault is underway against public education, formed by an impressive phalanx of fundamentalists, free-marketers, and propagandists. Even though the ferocity of the attack is perhaps unprecendented, the use of lies, statistical manipulations, and fear-mongering is nothing new in the history of educational reform. Snake oil salesmen have always had to conjure an illness in order to move their products.
Let me recommend an illuminating title that puts into focus how attacks on Am. public education have been used as political foils, for education profiteering, and to push social agendas by those rankled by the overly-democratic aspirations of free public education: The Manufactured Crisis: Myths, Fraud, and the Attack on America's Public Schools.
Whether debating school issues in the grocery checkout line or before a Congressional committee, this book provides a basis for distinguishing ideological bullshit from fact. Be prepared, be brave. Save the Republic.