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The Choice We Face by Jon Hale
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The Choice We Face

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The Choice We Face by Jon Hale
Hardcover $28.95
Aug 10, 2021 | ISBN 9780807087480

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“Supported with convincing research and illustrative detail, this impassioned history makes a strong case that quality of education—not variety of choice—should be the goal.”
Publishers Weekly

The Choice We Face is a bold book that puts race and segregation at the forefront of the educational reform movement. Hale’s writing is persuasive, comprehensive, and important for understanding how we fight against the school choice movement.”
—Bettina L. Love, author of We Want to Do More Than Survive

“Hale shines a light on the dark history behind seemingly neutral concepts like school choice and neighborhood schools. Those concepts weren’t a meaningful part of the national lexicon until resistance to integration took hold. With these code words, whites managed to paint themselves as the victims and integration as the oppressor. Hale helps us see how this shift has haunted and undermined equal education for half a century.”
—Derek W. Black, author of Schoolhouse Burning

“Though we fight for both as if they are guaranteed in our founding documents, neither choice nor education is found in the Constitution. What Hale’s The Choice We Face makes clear is that if we are to ensure a solid future for our traditional education system, we have to understand how communities have used the language and history of school choice as a weapon of mass destruction, as often as they have used those words as a battle cry to build a democracy that ensures freedom and citizenship for all. This book makes clear that the real choice we all face is the one between a hopeful future or an inequitable past.”
—Noliwe Rooks, author of Cutting School

“With his skillful excavation of a history too often ignored, Hale reminds us that the vision of public education as a shared and common good has yet to be realized and offers a path forward for finally getting there.”
—Jennifer C. Berkshire, author of A Wolf at the Schoolhouse Door

“Hale’s scholarship challenges us to come to grips with a reality that we cannot turn away from. Public education will either completely shift its direction toward justice or will forever remain a conduit of marginalization, isolation, and white supremacy for students of color. It is clear: reform under the cloak of ‘choice’ is not an option.”
—David Stovall, PhD, University of Illinois at Chicago and author of Born Out of Struggle

Table Of Contents

The Choice We Face

The “Divine Right” and our Freedom of Choice in Education

Milton Friedman and the Problems with Choice in Chicago

Racism by Yet Another Name: Busing, White Resistance, and the Foundations for a National School Choice Model

Federal Support of the School Choice Movement

The School Choice Menu

Race and a Civil Rights Claim to School Choice

The Sinking Ship of Public Education and the Failure of Choice

Resisting School Choice Through Counternarrative and Coalitions


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