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UW-Madison’s Underwood shares thoughts on private schools with OZY.com

December 28, 2017

The online news magazine OZY.com earlier this month asked its readers, “Should private education be banned?”

The report begins: “You aren’t born knowing how to be a citizen. The basic tenets of American myth, history and responsibility have to be learned somewhere, and that place is — ostensibly — in public schools. Meanwhile, private schools, long a bastion of the rich, the religious and the lucky few, have seen middle-class pupils dwindling as rich Americans are allowed to segregate their children behind the walls of prep schools costing tens of thousands a year, far away from anyone who’s ever seen the inside of a food bank.”

The article continues: “So why not ban the oligarchy altogether? Not so fast, supporters will say: People learn in many different ways, and a variety of approaches can better serve those kids. Plus, uniforms are a form of fashion democracy!”

OZY.com reached out to UW-Madison’s Julie Underwood to get her thoughts on the topic.

“There’s something to be said for diversity in all sorts of ways, including diversity of how we deliver education,” Underwood tells OZY.com. “My concern about private schools mainly is their constant need for public money and their unwillingness, for the most part, to comply with accountability measures.”

Underwood is the Susan Engeleiter Professor of Education Law, Policy and Practice, and the former dean of the School of Education.

To weigh in on this topic, check out the article on this OZY.com web page.

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