Public Education And Faith
"Our biblical heritage and our theology tell us we live in community, not soley in the marketplace. As we strive to move our imperfect world closer to the realm of God we recognize we are all responsible for making sure that public schools, as primary civic institutions, embody our love for one another." ~National Council of Churches Pastoral Letter on Public Education (2010)
Study Guide Resources
- Repairing the Breach: A Just Agenda for Public Education Reform: Questions for Federal and State Public Officials
- An Alternative Vision for Education: A Pastoral Letter on Federal Policy in Public Education
- Litany for Education and Schools
- Fact Sheet: Public education opportunity gaps.
- Questions to consider about charter schools
- Ten moral concerns in No Child Left Behind
- Bulletin Insert - Opportunity to Learn in Public Education
- Study Guide - Tested: One American School Tries to Make the Grade
Educational Opportunity Videos
To further the conversation about public education, watch these four short video conversations (embedded below), which bring the voices of Dr. John Jackson and Dr. Diane Ravitch to explore serious concerns raised in a Pastoral Letter by the National Council of Churches Governing Board about today’s federal public education policy. We also provide an accompanying video study guide to help you explore important questions: What is the impact of poverty on educational opportunity? How can the church help ensure opportunity to learn for all children? Why the attacks on school teachers and on schools as community institutions?
Video 1: Educational Opportunity for All — John Jackson, President and CEO of the Schott Foundation, and education historian Diane Ravitch discuss why our society must rise to the challenge of providing educational opportunity for every child in public schools.
Video 2: Public Schools and the Common Good — Education historian Diane Ravitch and John Jackson, President and CEO of the Schott Foundation consider what appears to be a timetable for the destruction of America’s system of public education and the imposition of competitive programs that create winners and losers, when the mission of public schools is to serve every child.
Video 3: Public Schools, Part of the Community or Marketplace? — Education historian Diane Ravitch and John Jackson, President and CEO of the Schott Foundation, reflect on the public role of public schools as an expression of our common purpose. How is it we have come to use a data driven approach to judge the most important things in life, things that do not have metrics like the love of learning?
Video 4: Supporting Our Teachers — John Jackson, President and CEO of the Schott Foundation, and education historian Diane Ravitch reflect together on how our society has come to demonize public school teachers. How is it that we have people doing some of the most important work of society being abused, ashamed and humiliated? Why does this have to stop?
National Council of Churches
Since its founding in 1950, the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA has been the leading force for ecumenical cooperation among Christians in the United States. The NCC's member faith groups — from a wide spectrum of Protestant, Anglican, Orthodox, Evangelical, historic African American and Living Peace churches — include 45 million persons in more than 100,000 local congregations in communities across the nation.