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Public Education: Parts One, Two, and Three.

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Public education is a universal part of the American experience. Every one of us interacts with our system of education whether directly or through taxation. Since the nation's founding, a commitment to universal education has been a pillar of our society. More recently, however, public education has come under attack from several places. Some of the criticism is fair. But some of the sharpest attacks have been coordinated by far right extremists determined to break the system and replace it with private enterprises, faith-based curriculums or even...nothing. This episode combines our previous three-part series into one thorough, albeit incomplete, history of public education and the challenges it faces.


Intro: 00:00:48

Chapter One: Framing the Inquiry: 00:05:40

Chapter Two: The Structure and Language of Education: 00:15:22

Chapter Three: The Opposition: 00:26:13

Chapter Four: Phase One: Expansion. The 16th Lot. 00:40:50

Chapter Five: Phase Two: Reconstruction. 00:46:27

Chapter Six: Phase Three: Desegregation. 00:56:24

Chapter Seven: Phase Four. Privatization. 01:12:09

Chapter Eight: Vouchers are stupid and racist and they don’t work. 01:19:21

Chapter Nine: Arne Dunks on Public Education. 01:30:16

Chapter Ten: The Propaganda Machine in Full Swing: 01:45:57

Chapter Eleven: Bring it home, Max. 01:58:12


World Socialist Web Site: 2.6 million US educators and staff quit public K-12 and higher education jobs during pandemic

National Center for Education Statistics: Public School Enrollment

The Nation’s Report Card: Student Performance Across Subjects

National Center for Education Statistics: Total number of public school teachers and percentage of public school teachers in a union or employees' association, by selected school characteristics: 2015–16

Resilient Educator: Your Guide to Education Lingo

Learning Journals: What Are the Different Pedagogical Approaches to Learning?

Rasmussen University: What Is Reggio Emilia? Your Guide to This Child-Driven Approach

Stanford: An Introduction to Design Thinking

Understood: Understanding IEPs

Resilient Educator: Project Based Learning: A Hands On Approach To Teaching

Bookshop.org: Mindset: The New Psychology of Success

National Association for Science, Medicine and Engineering: The Integration of the Humanities and Arts with Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine in Higher Education: Branches from the Same Tree

Resilient Educator: Why the “A” in STEAM Education is Just As Important As Every Other Letter

U.S. News: IB vs. AP: Discover the Differences

Peter G. Peterson Foundation: How Is K-12 Education Funded?

EdBuild: Nonwhite School Districts Get $23 Billion Less Than White Districts Despite Serving The Same Number Of Students

Pew Charitable Trusts: ‘Lost Decade’ Casts a Post-Recession Shadow on State Finances

OECD: Education at a Glance: OECD Indicators 2012 

National Center for Education Statistics: Long-term trends in reading and mathematics achievement

The Heritage Foundation: The Battle Over Parents’ Rights in Education Is Just Getting Started

The Heritage Foundation: America’s School Choice Moment Can’t Be Missed at Midterm Elections

Bookshop: Race to the Bottom

Teaching American History: Letter to Nathaniel Banks

National Archives: Brown v. Board of Education (1954)

National Center For Education Statistics: Results from the NAEP 2022 Mathematics & Reading Assessments at Grades 4 & 8

OECD.org: Rankings

National Foundation for Educational Research: OECD Funding Models

Peter G. Peterson Foundation: How Is K-12 Education Funded?

National Education Association

Resilient Educator: Your Guide to Education Lingo

Pew Research Center: Religion in the Public Schools

Salon: Florida ranked No. 1 for "education freedom" — by right-wing group that wants to privatize it all

Heritage Foundation: Education Freedom Report Card

The New York Times: Profits and Questions at Online Charter Schools

NY Daily News: Fix this wasteful federal charter-school fund

The Nation’s Report Card: Student Performance Across Subjects

EdWeek: Education Statistics: Facts About American Schools

EdWeek: Lawmakers, Education Secretary Clash Over Charter School Rules

Teaching Certification: Education Spending by State – How does your state compare?

Book Love

Derek W. Black: Schoolhouse Burning: Public Education and the Assault on American Democracy

Samuel Eliot Morison, Henry Steele Commager and William E. Leuchtenburg: A Concise History of the American Republic: Volume 1

Howard Gardner: Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences

Nelson Lichtenstein: State of the Union: A Century of American Labor

Nancy McLean: Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right's Stealth Plan for America

UNFTR Episode Resources

Public Education (Part One): Scaffolding.

The End of Roe v. Wade: Extinguishing the Penumbra.

F*ck Milton Friedman.

America Inc. Copyright, 2021.


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Unf*cking the Republic is produced by 99 and engineered by Manny Faces Media (mannyfacesmedia.com). Original music is by Tom McGovern (tommcgovern.com). The show is written and hosted by Max and distributed by 99.

Podcast art description: Image of the US Constitution ripped in the middle revealing white text on a blue background that says, "Unf*cking the Republic."

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Unf*cking The Republic® (UNFTR)

Unf*cking The Republic® (UNFTR) is a series of audio essays on the grand American experiment lovingl 
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