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Uncivil RightsTeachers, Unions, and Race in the Battle for School Equity$
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Jonna Perrillo

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780226660714

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: February 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226660738.001.0001

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Conclusion: Moving beyond Rights?

Conclusion: Moving beyond Rights?

Teacher Professionalism and Civil Rights in the Era of No Child Left Behind

(p.181) Conclusion: Moving beyond Rights?
Uncivil Rights
University of Chicago Press

This chapter outlines the recent efforts that teacher unions have made to address the quality of education in minority schools, the limits they have faced in their efforts, and the ways in which the historical tension between teachers' rights and civil rights has shaped the political landscape. The agenda that the midcentury teachers developed to advance their own professionalism undermined their moral authority in local communities. The legacy of this agenda enabled the design of federal legislation that focuses on teacher quality as the primary obstacle to minority student success. This chapter highlights the importance of rethinking about the centrality of rights to school reform projects and to visualize the empowerment of teachers and students as mutually beneficial goals, along with the failure of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) to improve education for minority students and the historical events.

Keywords:   teacher unions, education, schools, civil rights, teachers, professionalism, federal legislation, No Child Left Behind, NCLB, students

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