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Daniel McFarland

Where Do The Children Play? The Urban Spaces Project at PS X

This case explores the complicated relationship between schools and their geographic neighbors by focusing on a playground renovation project at an urban school serving low-income students. This school’s location in an increasingly gentrified and affluent neighborhood serves to challenge existing assumptions about the coupling of school and community interests. The events surrounding this playground renovation project illustrate the miscommunication, distrust, conflict and lack of consensus that results when the neighborhood schools model no longer holds.

The Politics of School Vouchers: Analyzing the Milwaukee Parental Choice Plan

This case examines the initiation, development, and implementation of the nation’s oldest and largest publicly-funded school voucher program, the Milwaukee Parental Choice Plan (MPCP). After several years of failed attempts, the program finally gained acceptance in 1990 when voucher proponents teamed up with African American leaders and shifted the ideology of school vouchers from a market-based argument to one that emphasized educational equity.

The Japanese Question: San Francisco Education in 1906

On October 11, 1906, a policy adopted by the San Francisco Board of Education intending to segregate Japanese students to ‘Oriental schools’ in San Francisco, created a national and international controversy.

The Creation of Stanford’s Program in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity

The authors examine the creation of Stanford’s Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity (CSRE) program in 1996. They present a brief discussion of the history of ethnic studies and other programs aimed at serving underrepresented minorities at Stanford. Finally, they consider the various effects of student demand and protest, ethnic student organizations, interested faculty and administrative actors, and organizational decision-making processes on the shaping and emergence of CSRE.

The Commission on Undergraduate Education

The Commission on Undergraduate Education at Stanford University formed in the fall of 1993 to evaluate key issues affecting undergraduate education. As a prominent research university, Stanford sought to ensure that undergraduate education could thrive in a research-centered environment. Faculty, alumni, students, and administrators all influenced the direction of the commission.

The Alaska Humanities Forum

Movements in education immediately after World War II emphasized research based studies in the natural sciences. Members of the legislature saw education as a means to actively fortify the republic. This national focus in education underscored America’s Cold War need for new discoveries with practical applications. By the sixties, the asymmetry in government support for education was evident to the next generation of the legislature. Federal education agendas were obscuring the humanities. The humanities were consequently orphaned by public perception.

Madagascar's Adult Literacy Initiative

This case study describes the organizational actors that were involved the adoption of a training method in an Adult Literacy Initiative in Madagascar. The Initiative exemplifies the organizational structures and activities that have followed the 1990 World Conference on Education for All (EFA) in Jomtien, Thailand. Since EFA, there has been a spurt in coordinated ideas and programs among international development organizations to achieve universal education worldwide.

Independent Regulators -The Case of the Indian Electricity Regulator

Developing countries have instituted independent regulators (IRs) since the nineties to oversee reforms in and depoliticize infrastructure sectors. IRs are institutions with appointed members, and a unique blend of rulemaking, administrative and quasi-judicial powers. They are supposed to make decisions through a transparent, participatory process, but also exercise discretion. Yet in practice they often exhibit weak outcomes. In India, IRs regulate state-owned utilities, whose clout with government weakens regulators’ powers in practice.


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