Kevin B. Hawkins
Brigham Young University Idaho
Given the current state of the education system, Kevin Hawkins argues that by increasing the amount of options that parents and students have for schools, and be decreasing federal control over the education system, the quality of the education that students receive will also increase. Hawkins utilizes the persuasive method of logos to show the logical need for change, the potential innovation that competition could create if implemented into our education system, and the way in which we could implement that competition. Hawkins argues that current federal programs are not producing the results that they were intended to produce. He claims that in many cases, these programs do more harm than good. Finally, Hawkins considers the opposing viewpoints. He fairly portrays opposing argument and states what parts he can accept and what parts he finds fallacious and why. He concludes that increasing the competition in our education system is the most logical solution to our current problem.
Introduction and Background
Our education system is not producing the results that the youth of this country deserve. There are many different opinions as to why this is happening, but very few of these opinions are founded on empirical evidence. In this paper, I will first give some background information regarding the issue, and then I will define some key terms for my argument. Next I will touch on the important issues concerning the argument and explain why I support these positions. Finally, I will consider some of the prominent opposing views and explain why they lack the evidence that I would need in order to support them.
Let’s start by taking a look at a little background information concerning the topic of education. According to an article published in the Summer 2005 edition of ED., the magazine of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, education was largely an issue of local and state government until the passing of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act in 1965 (ESEA). This act was part of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s “War on Poverty” and has been by far the most expansive piece of federal legislation regarding education (Hana, 2005). We will take a closer look at this piece of legislation in the paragraph that follows, but first we will look at the argument that the federal government doesn’t have the constitutional right to enact legislation regarding education. The 10th amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America states, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” (U.S. Const. amend. X). So if there is no mention of education whatsoever in the Constitution, how could the government get away with passing legislation concerning education? Proponents of federal education programs argue that Article I Section IIX of the Constitution indirectly gives them this power in what is known as the “General Welfare clause.” This clause states, “The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;” (U.S. Const. art. I sect. IIX). Aimed at trying to give equal opportunity to all children in America regardless of race or economic wealth, ESEA grants financial assistance to local educational agencies for the education of children of low-income families. “In recognition of the special educational needs of low-income families and the impact that concentrations of low-income families have on the ability of local educational agencies to support adequate educational programs, the Congress hereby declares it to be the policy of the United States to...
References: Belfield, C. R. (2007). The Effects of Competition on Educational Outcomes. Educational Resource Imformation
Dillon, S. (April 22, 2009). Large Urban-Suburban Gap Seen in Graduation Rates. New York Times
Education Law Center. (2009). Charter School Acvhievement: Hype vs Evidence. School Funding and Reform accross the Nation, Retrieved from http://www.educationjustice.org/newsletters/nlej_iss21_art5_detail_CharterSchoolAchievement.htm.
Hanna, J. (2005). Elementary and Secondary Education Act: 40 years later. The Ed. - See more at: http://reffor.us/index.php#sthash.tOvnHeLx.dpuf
U.S. Constitution, Amendment 10
Please join StudyMode to read the full document