Course Detail
Course Components:
Meets with: ECS 6856. This graduate seminar seeks to understand the implications associate with neoliberal theories and practices increasingly shaping the K-12 and higher education context in the U.S. From the recent shutdown of half of Detroit city public schools to the post-Katrina privatization of New Orleans schools, neoliberal approaches to dealing with economic and socio-ecological disaster have become the dominant blueprint for transforming public goods into private for-profit sites of investment and disinvestment. In order to better understand the origins of neoliberal trends of recent neoliberal school reform strategies, this seminar begins by tracing neoliberal economic theory back to its beginning in the Chicago School of Economics in the work of Milton Friedman, Jacob Mincer, Gary Becker, and a host of others. One of the central questions this seminar investigates is how an obscure economic framework that emerged during the post-WWII period became the leading framework for guiding educational reform in the U.S. In this sense the seminar seeks to understand the historical and political connections of neoliberal economic restructuring in the U.S. and across the globe that began in the late 1970's and set its sights on educational institutions and practices as one of the key sites for radical free market intervention.