Cato Institute education scholar Neal McCluskey highlighted a central miscalculation in the concept of centrally planned public education, that of ignoring the powerful views of individual parents.
“People thought, ‘Look, if we have one system of schools, all these diverse people, religiously diverse, ethnically diverse, philosophically diverse, would all kind of come together in school districts and they would talk about their differences and they would reach lots of compromises and learn to get along, because they have to, because it’s about their kids, and the system is sort of bringing them together,’” McCluskey told The Daily Caller. “But that really ignores kind of basic human reality. Which is we are all diverse people and we do have different things we want out of schools.”
McCluskey pointed out that this central desire for diverse differences in education has lead to the friction.
“Different religious values in schools, where some people want no religious values in education, some people want the new math, some people want the old math,” he continued. “There are all sorts of things we disagree on, and the assumption would have to be that people would take these often things that are fundamental to their identity, could be their ethnicity, their religion, whatever it is and just give it up for the common good and presumably let some group be the one that gets what they want. But that’s just not what people do.”
McCluskey adds: “It’s unreasonable to just assume that public schools would bring diverse people together and then historically, if you look, there is lots of evidence of major conflict caused by public schools.”
See the previous segments of the interview with McCluskey: