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"Over the years, various fads have seized the education bureaucrats of America, but those fads have been variations on a theme: The public schools are intended to create complacent "good citizens" ? not independent thinkers ? because political leaders do not like boat-rockers who question things too closely. They prefer citizens who pay their taxes on time and leave them alone to chart the course of the nation. The growth in government power since the advent of public schools is hard to ignore.
So, judged by their purpose, how have the public schools performed?
Not bad, really. Unlike our ancestors' private schools, the public schools produce citizens who look to government to make important decisions for them ? from whether to help the poor, to what drugs to take, to how to get an education ? and solve societal problems.
In other words, the public schools are working. If we do not like what they have achieved, then we have to junk the Prussian system and move toward an education based on the American principles of free markets and individual liberty. Mere reform is not enough. We need to separate school and state. That's the only sure way to revitalize education, families, and the American spirit. "
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