The idea that public schools are failing is one of the most commonly heard complaints in American society. But what are they failing to do? Surveys of American parents—and the history of the nation's public education system—tell a more complicated story. In this episode, The Atlantic's education editor Alia Wong joins Jeff, Matt, and Alex for a conversation about how we define and measure success in public education.
We’d like to hear your stories about education: public, private, school-of-hard-knocks, you name it. Call us up at (202)266-7600 and leave us a voicemail with your story and your answer to the question, “What is public education for?” Don't forget to leave your contact info.
- “The War on Public Schools” (Erika Christakis)
- “Americans’ Views of Public Schools Still Far Worse Than Parents’” (Gallup)
- “Education for a Classless Society” (James Conant Bryant, May 1940)
- “Back to School: What Is the Purpose of Public Education?” (Nikole Hannah-Jones, Kristina Rizga, INFORUM at the Commonwealth Club)
- “Segregation Now” (Nikole Hannah-Jones)
- “The Resegregation of Jefferson County” (Nikole Hannah-Jones, The New York Times Magazine)
- “Choosing a School for My Daughter in a Segregated City” (Nikole Hannah-Jones, The New York Times Magazine)
- “Back to School Special” (Nate Bowling, Nerd Farmer)
- “Anatomy of Doubt” (This American Life)
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.