Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Shame of the Nation. A Librarian at Every Table. No. 328.

In his new book Shame of the Nation: the Restoration of Apartheid Schooling in America, Jonathan Kozol draws a grim picture of U.S. public schools, particularly those in poor urban neighborhoods. He graphically reports on the decaying infrastructure, the under-spending and overcrowding; the lack of art and music teachers, librarians, doctors—many of the things that are taken for granted in better-off, whiter public schools. But the central theme of Kozol's book, the theme that seems to connect these other troubling factors, is race. Kozol argues that racial segregation in public schools is beyond critical—perhaps as bad as it was three decades ago, with some formerly integrated schools becoming re-segregated.

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