ABOUT THIS BOOK
What is the mission of American public education? As a nation, are we still committed to educating students to be both workers and citizens, as we have long proclaimed, or have we lost sight of the second goal of encouraging students to be contributing members of a democratic society?In this enlightening book, Michael Johanek and John Puckett describe one of America's most notable experiments in "community education." In the process, they offer a richly contextualized history of twentieth-century efforts to educate students as community-minded citizens. Although student test scores now serve to measure school achievement, the authors argue compellingly that the democratic goals of citizen-centered community schools can be reconciled with the academic performance demands of contemporary school reform movements. Using the twenty-year history of community-centered schooling at Benjamin Franklin High School in East Harlem as a case study—and reminding us of the pioneering vision of its founder, Leonard Covello—they suggest new approaches for educating today's students to be better "public work citizens."