The Importance Of Democratic Education

1574 Words 7 Pages
The above words, so eloquently spoken by Thomas Jefferson, the opening to the Declaration of Independence, are synonymous with freedom and the bedrock of America’s democracy. For the intent of this essay, I will focus on the right to the pursuit of happiness and contend that the liberty beholden by the above statement threatens a democratic education. In order to this, I will answer the following questions: What is a democratic education? How can a democratic education be achieved in a school? How does capitalism and neoliberalism threaten to destroy a democratic education? For the purpose of defining a democratic education, I now turn to Matthew Knoester who states, “in order to educate democratic citizens it is important to create a school that is internally democratic” (2012, p. 14). In response to this statement Knoester turns to Amy Gutmann who proposes a democratic education model that includes shared decision making among educational stakeholders, and a responsibility to nonrepression, expanding worldviews, and nondiscrimination, inclusion of all children (as cited in Knoester, 2012). What this model does is prevent stakeholders from overstepping their …show more content…
In order to reply, I first need to return to the unalienable right to the pursuit of happiness, a right supported by the Declaration of Independence. The democracy guaranteed by this right makes possible for a free-market economy through capitalism that allows for individual owners to have the right to choose what to produce, how to produce, and what price to sell their products or services for. The decision for what to produce and how much to sell it for is based on the law of supply and demand, thus creating producers (service providers), employees (workers) and consumers (buyers), the higher the demand, the more profit and the lower demand, the less

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