Publication Date: August 17, 2018
How do market-driven reforms and the privatization of public education reshape the professional identities of teachers and school leaders?
This timely and accessible book examines two waves of business influence that created models of schooling that are out of touch with the experiences of students, the professional expertise of teachers, and the needs and interests of local communities. The book also describes the forms of resistance that are currently emerging to fight for the democratic mission of a public education. Building on these promising efforts, the authors present a vision for a new democratic professional that is grounded in participatory communities of practice, as well as advocacy for and input from school communities.
More than a critique of the state of education, this volume demonstrates how educators can build coalitions and advocate for policies and practices that respect their experience and knowledge and that support their students and communities.
Gary L. Anderson is professor of educational leadership at the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, New York University. Michael Ian Cohen is assistant professor of leadership, policy, and development at the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences, University of Northern Colorado.
"The New Democratic Professional in Education is ambitious and, for its length, covers an impressive amount of ground." —Teachers College Record
“ The New Democratic Professional in Education (makes) long overdue and critically important contributions to the field. On one level, (it reveals) how sociopolitical and economic factors not only affect aspects of everyday life for practitioners but also acutely influence and govern schooling systems and the behaviors within them. The authors help practitioners understand how we got here, what we are up against, and refreshingly offer answers to the key questions: What are we fighting for? How can we make democratic and just schooling a reality? The scholars should be celebrated for their contributions to the teacher education and leadership education fields… (they) offer concrete guidance for the front-line workers who are entrusted to enact these ambitious goals for democracy. They deliver to teachers and leaders more than critique; they offer them practical steps that they can take to empower themselves and their schools to forge ahead on more democratic paths amid contrary market forces.”
“Anderson and Cohen provide an essential, nuanced analysis of how privatization efforts have shaped the working conditions and professional identities of teachers and leaders. This book finds promise in the revitalized coalitions of teachers, leaders, unions, and community organizations that are resisting market logic and advocating for democratic and equitable public schools with concrete, evidence-driven policies and practices.”
—Janelle Scott, University of California, Berkeley
"The New Democratic Professional in Education is an important and accessible book that should be read by public educators at all levels, from early childhood teachers to higher education faculty. It clearly discusses the economic, cultural, and political forces that have transformed the workplaces and identities of public educators in the last few decades by bringing new forms of management into public service professions around the world. Importantly, Anderson and Cohen offer us a way out of current forms of corporatized education and organizational professionalism by building on and strengthening existing examples of democratic and community-responsive professionalism. This is truly a remarkable book."
—Ken Zeichner, University of Washington
“With this book, Anderson and Cohen have given a true gift to educational practitioners and scholars. They don’t just stop at explaining how and why educators have come to be governed by ineffective, market-oriented policies and logic (which is a fascinating history that anyone interested in public schools and professionalism needs to understand). They also outline a clear path forward for resisting these counterproductive reforms, reclaiming the democratic purposes of education, and igniting communities’ values for schooling as a public good.”
—Tina Trujillo, University of California, Berkeley
Table of Contents
Chapter 1. Privatizing Professionals: Teaching and Leading under New Public Management
What’s Behind the Attack on the Public Sector and the Public-Sector Professional?
Are Teaching and Administration Professions?
Professional Work in an Audit Culture
New Capitalism and the New Corporate Workplace
New Governance and New Public Management
New Public Management and the Activist State
Toward a New Democratic Professional in Education
Chapter 2. The Historical and Political Construction of the New Professional
How Did We Get Here?
Early Business-Inspired Reforms
Professionalism in the Bureaucracy
Bureaucracy Versus Community
Early Business Policy Players
Chapter 3. The Second Wave of Business Influence and the Appeal of New Managerialism
The Failure of New Public Management Reforms in Education Corporations, Managerialism, and the Role of Business Schools
New Managerialism and the Failure of the American Business Model
A Brief History of the American Corporation
The Appeal of New Public Management: Political Spectacle, Cross-sector Borrowing, and Cognitive Framing
Chapter 4. New Policy Actors and Networks Design the New Teacher and Leader
Strange Bedfellows: Who Supports New Public Management Reforms?
New Policy Actors: The Emergence of Issue Networks
The Growing Role of Privatization, Contracting, and "Edubusinesses"
Training the New Education Professional
Chapter 5. Responding to NPM and New Professionalism
How New Public Management and New Professionalism Became the New Normal
Resisting New Public Management and New Professionalism
From Resistance to Democratic Professionalism
Chapter 6. The New Democratic Professional: Building New Alliances for Change
Characteristics of a New Democratic Professional
Building on Existing Democratic Practices and Policies
Building Counter-Networks: New Alliances for Change
About the Authors
2020 Society of Professors of Education Outstanding Book Award