Connexions Resource Centre
Focus on Education, Children
Recent & Selected Articles
- This is a small sampling of articles related to education and children in the Connexions Online Library. For more articles, books, films, and other resources, check the Connexions Library Subject Index, especially under topics such as
- At the Escuelita Zapatista, Students Learn Community Organizing and Civil Resistance as a Way of Life (August 29, 2013)
From August 11-17, the Zapatistas brought more than 1,500 people into their communities to attend the Escuelita Zapatista, the Little Zapatista School. According to a February comunicado by the EZLN, in a class entitled Liberty According to the Zapatistas: Autonomous Government I, our compas from the Zapatista bases of support are going to share the little we have learned about the struggle for freedom, and the [the students] can see what is useful or not for their own struggles.
- The Predatory Pedagogy of On-Line Education (June 3, 2013)
Distance learning amounts to the erosion of the traditional face-to-face classroom.
- Black Teachers Revolt of the 1960s (October 26, 2012)
Chicagos educational apartheid has a history which includes the racial segregation of its schools, the allocation of resources on an unequal basis and second class treatment for teachers of color. It was Jim Crow North. But there was also resistance, a resistance which grew into a powerful social movement during the 1960s.
- After the Arab spring, the struggle continues on a university campus (October 16, 2012)
A university administrator takes a stand against religious extremism.
- Austerity and Resistance: Lessons from the 2012 Quebec Student Strike (October 15, 2012)
The student strike in Quebec has ended, in a rather clear victory. After a seven month-long struggle the longest of its kind in Quebec history students have won a cancellation of the proposed tuition hike, a pledge to repeal the infamous Law 78 that had criminalized demonstrations, and the ouster of Premier Jean Charest and his Liberal government.
- Once Again on Education: Beyond Ordinary Leftism (October 15, 2012)
An article exploring elements of education in the USA.
- Memory as Resistance: Grassroots Archives and the Battle of Memory (October 14, 2012)
CONNEXIONS and Beit Zatoun are spotlighting grassroots archives this November with an open house and networking event November 24, a talk and discussion November 27, and an exhibit (November 16-27). Grassroots archives play a valuable role in what has been called the battle of memory. Mainstream media and institutions of power consign inconvenient histories, struggles, and alternative visions to what George Orwell called the memory hole. Peoples history projects such as grassroots archives preserve and share stories of resistance, hidden histories, and alternative visions. Their role is particularly important as official archives are forced to restrict acquisitions, limit access and discard materials as funding is slashed.
- Criminalizing Truancy (September 11, 2012)
American jurisdictions are increasingly turning to the criminal justice system to deal with truancy. Students and parents are being fined, and in some cases jailed, for missing school.
- The Gates Foundation's Leveraged Philanthropy (July 4, 2012)
Gates' leveraged philanthropy model is a public-private partnership to improve the world, partly through targeted research support but principally through public advocacy and tax-free lobbying to influence government policy. The goal of these policies is often to explicitly support profitability for corporate investors, whose enterprises are seen by the Gates Foundation as advancing human good. However, maximum corporate profit and public good often clash when its projects are implemented.
- Make Sure You Don't Fall: Perspectives on the Recent Social Agitation in Chile, Part One (June 3, 2012)
Discontent and rage have always been there, but while Social Democracy was in power, the supporters of the regimewell placed in the open spaces for action and thought in high schools, universities and companieswere able to use them to channel protests into directions that did not endanger the political credibility of the ruling parties.
- Chile: Return of the Penguins! (March 1, 2012)
The struggle to democratize Chiles educational system has, for the first time since the countrys return to bourgeois democracy in 1990, challenged the very foundations of its neoliberal model.
- Neo-Racism in the Southwest (January 18, 2012)
What is taking place in southern Arizona deserves our attention as the most fanatical episode in the war against public education.
- Connexions Archive Case Statement (September 24, 2011)
Working together to secure a future for the past
- Youth Subdued (July 28, 2011)
Traditionally, young people have energized democratic movements. But now young Americanseven more so than older Americansappear to have acquiesced to the idea that the corporatocracy can completely screw them and that they are helpless to do anything about it.
- War Colleges (June 29, 2011)
One consequence of the increasing militarization of American society can be seen in changes that have taken place in public and higher education. Schools have become the testing grounds for new modes of security and military-style authority.
- Rethinking Educational Failure and Reimagining an Educational Future (March 19, 2011)
If we start not from the goal of acculturating most children to the demands of an economy which promises only to make things worse, but from the goal of preparing all children to live in a world worthy of human beings, we will find a very different kind of education reform to advocate for. It will have some things in common with some parts of current reform efforts
but it will go beyond and transform them.
- What is education for? (December 31, 2010)
There is a fundamental difference between being a student and being a consumer. Education is not a product but a relationship and a process, a relationship between student and lecturer, and process by which knowledge transforms the individual. When someone buys a car or a hamburger, he or she is purchasing a pre-packaged, readymade commodity to satisfy a specific need. Education is about creating critical thinkers whose skill is precisely the ability to challenge ideas that are pre-packaged or readymade or designed to satisfy such a need.
- Israeli Soldiers Sexually Abuse Palestinian Children (September 13, 2010)
- Death of the university? (June 27, 2010)
As universities have turned into businesses, so students have turned into consumers. There is, however, a fundamental difference between being a student and being a consumer. Education is not a product but a relationship and a process. Once students become consumers, their whole relationship to education changes. They come to look upon ideas, not as ways of understanding the world, but as possessions that they can trade for a better job or greater social prestige.
- Connexions Archive seeks a new home (November 18, 2009)
The Connexions Archive, a Toronto-based library dedicated to preserving the history of grassroots movements for social change, needs a new home.
- Guernica Written With the Hands and Hearts of Children (October 5, 2009)
The keynote speaker at the launch of the exhibition Gaza's childrens' paintings, referred to the paintings as 'a toxic cargo of beautiful but unwelcome images which it is necessary that we see and acknowledge.' Toxic because the blockade and assault on Gaza was, and is, toxic. Toxic because the paintings mirror back to our adult world the poisonous environment we have watched develop for these children. The paintings describe aerial bombardment of apartment blocks, mosques, schools, hospitals, ambulances. They portray phosphorous, helicopter and drone attacks on civilians. Gunboats fire inland from the sea. Bulldozers demolish homes. Everything happens in an enclosed space from which there is no escape.
- Spain Excludes Settlement University from Academic Competition (September 21, 2009)
The "University Center of Ariel in Samaria" (AUCS) has been excluded from a prestigious university competition about sustainable architecture in Spain. With this move, Spain joins the growing number of European governments taking effective, even though preliminary, steps to uphold international law by boycotting or divesting from institutions and corporations involved in or profiting from Israel's illegal Wall and colonial settlements built on occupied Palestinian land.
- Mobile Schools Help Nomadic Somalis Fight Drought (September 17, 2009)
Mobile schools - secular pre-schools which follow these groups as they move to find pasture and water for livestock - are an attempt to help nomadic communities develop more options as the climate becomes increasingly hostile.
- The Corporate Stranglehold on Education (September 8, 2009)
Rather than challenge the economic irresponsibility, ecological damage, and human suffering, and culture of cruelty unleashed by free market fundamentalism, higher education appears to be one of its staunchest defenders, uncritically embracing a view of itself based on a market model of the academy.
- Brazil: Changing Lives Through the Power of Dance (September 7, 2009)
Founded in 1991 and directed by Dora Andrade, EDISCA is a non-governmental organisation that caters exclusively to children and adolescents from poor neighbourhoods.
- Fighting For The Right To Walk (September 4, 2009)
Israel has denied the residents of Gaza -- children and adults -- Gaza food, medical supplies, clean water, building materials, health care, and pretty much every other element of normal life, and in doing so has violated the most basic standards of human decency.
- Education gap divides Jerusalem (September 3, 2009)
A recent report by an Israeli non-governmental organisation says 5,000 Palestinian children in East Jerusalem will not be able to attend classes this year because there are not enough classrooms.
- Gaza's Kite Runners (August 11, 2009)
Gazan children's kites are expressions of defiance, hope and the longing for freedom.
- Israel's School Apartheid Highlighted By Court Case (August 10, 2009)
Instances of Arab children being denied places at kindergartens and junior schools have become more common in recent years. Now, an Arab couple whose daughter was expelled from an Israeli daycare centre on her first day because she was Arab is taking the case to court.
- Turning Children Into Consumers (June 29, 2009)
Children are naïve about advertising and can easily be manipulated and exploited by marketers to want and demand their products. Corporate marketers believe that over time they can be shaped into lifelong consumers with brand loyalties and that can be profitable for decades to come.
- Keeping Books Safe (April 2, 2009)
Imagine a dystopian horror tale in which virtually all books from the past were destroyed...Books that did not meet the ideologies of the publishers, the demands of the mass market, the trends of the day would be destroyed...That incredible scenario is actually playing out in terms of children's books under a law meant to protect toddlers from lead contaminant in toys. Called the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), the law was passed in August 2008 -- quickly, without scrutiny and nearly unanimously.
- Race Obsession harms those it is meant to help (March 29, 2009)
Ethnic monitoring does not just produce misleading data. The process of classification often creates the very problems it is supposed to solve. Local authorities have used ethnic categories not only as a means of collecting data but also as a way of distributing political power # by promoting certain #community leaders# # and of disbursing public funds through ethnically-based projects. Once the allocation of power, resources and opportunities becomes linked to membership of particular groups, then people inevitably begin to identify themselves in terms of those ethnicities, and only those ethnicities.
- The Israel Advocacy Push to 'Reclaim' York University (March 3, 2009)
York is a longstanding hub for #Israel advocacy# organizations (as they designate themselves). This reality expresses itself in various ways. At the grassroots level, far-right Zionist organizing has been common at York since at least the early 1980s, and seems to have even included direct recruitment for armed settler movements in the West Bank (and more commonly for the Israeli military itself). At the level of university fundraising, York has thoroughly integrated some of Canada#s leading Israel advocacy figures into its main administrative bodies. And at the level of university governance, York has earned a reputation for deep association with the Israeli state and for heavy-handed regulation of campus politics in favor of Israel advocates.
- Academic Freedom Threatened in Ontario Universities (February 18, 2009)
While most academics would agree that a university should be a place where critical debate is fostered, what is academic freedom when the freedom to attend classes without being bombed isn't even assured? Academic freedom falters it seems when it comes to Palestine, whether in the Middle East or in North America. Not only is there no realizable academic freedom for Palestinians, but also, even in North America, students and faculty raising critical viewpoints about Israel find themselves muffled, accused of anti-Semitism, threatened with disciplinary action, or, in the case of former Depaul University professor, Norman Finkelstein, out of a job entirely.
- The Case for Academic Boycott (January 31, 2009)
Academic boycott targets Israel's intellectual leadership, the educated elite whose record consists largely of misinforming Israelis about their history, distorting their understanding of current conflicts, normalizing the racism of their society, and providing to the Israeli military and government the legal, technological, and political tools it needs to facilitate the continued theft of Palestinian land and the containment of its restive population.
- Public Universities in Peril (July 1, 2008)
It's hare to imagine that only a year ago the privatization of a public university would emerge as a major political issue in Bloomington, Indiana. That is not to say the topic took the community by surprise. As early as 1994, the Indiana Universitys Board of Trustees formed various tasks forces to evaluate the universitys potential for privatization.
- Edward Said's shadowy legacy (May 7, 2008)
So many academics want the arguments presented in Edward Said's Orientalism (1978) to be true. It discourages any kind of critical approach to Islam in Middle Eastern studies.
- The Survival of Education (May 1, 2008)
I remember reading Jonathan Kozols Savage Inequalities as a student activist, when becoming a teacher was an abstract and somewhat romanticized idea floating around my head. I was moved by the politically sharp but also deeply humanizing way in which Kozol documented how institutional racism and class inequality shape the experiences of students in American schools, a reality that all of us who have been educated in this country have experienced first-hand in one way or another.
- Profit motives behind sexualization of 'tween girls (April 25, 2008)
The sexualization of 'tween girls - those between the ages of 8 and 12 -- in pop culture and advertising is a growing problem fueled by marketers' efforts to create cradle-to-grave consumers.
- Free Speech and Acceptable Truths (April 1, 2008)
While we support freedom of speech and academic freedom, we believe that university administrations have a duty to provide a safe learning environment in which students and faculty are protected by incorrect or harmful ideas. To achieve this safe learning environment, it will be necessary for the university authorities to cleanse the university's libraries of harmful books, to block inappropriate Internet sites, to ban guest lectures who hold improper views, and to identify and prosecute students and faculty who are guilty of thought crimes.
- Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage: What is at Stake? (February 27, 2008)
There are good people on either side of the same-sex marriage debate. Unfortunately, however, it has been one of the most divisive issues in society. Opponents of same-sex marriage perceive the other side as part of a cabal of gay activists and social-engineering judges and politicians, intent on making a mockery of important social values. Proponents of same-sex marriage often perceive the other side as "homophobic" bigots or religious fundamentalists who want to deprive gay or lesbian couples of a right enjoyed by others because they hate homosexuals. The debate over same-sex marriage has divided people who share common values and beliefs on many fundamental questions--war and peace, economic security, democracy versus the increasingly anti-democratic and repressive nature of American society. This divisive debate cripples the ability of ordinary Americans to unite around the things that we agree on.
- Who owns knowledge? (September 21, 2007)
The resurgence of a Romantic view of culture poses a real menace to the free flow of knowledge and threatens to corral it into intellectual Bantustans. The ideas of free speech and open debate become meaningless if we fail to defend a universalist concept of knowledge or if we accept the notion of science as but a local view whose factual claims must defer to cultural and political needs. If scientific debate is constrained to express only sentiments with which people feel comfortable, culturally and politically, then science dies as the line between knowledge and myth becomes eroded.
- Health care and children in crisis in Gaza (March 26, 2007)
These days one hears a lot about Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan, adults who have been specifically trained for warfare, who are nevertheless traumatized by the experience of seeing comrades injured or killed, or suffering injuries or danger themselves. The trauma goes on, long after the experience has ended and they are back in a place of safety. How much worse then for children in Gaza who witness and experience these events day after day, week after week with no end and with no place of safety.
- Strip-Searching Children (March 15, 2007)
Israeli officials have been regularly strip-searching children for decades.
- My Father Was an Anonymous Sperm Donor (December 17, 2006)
Those of us in the first documented generation of donor babies -- conceived in the late 1980s and early '90s, when sperm banks became more common and donor insemination began to flourish -- are coming of age, and we have something to say. I'm here to tell you that emotionally, many of us are not keeping up. We didn't ask to be born into this situation, with its limitations and confusion. It's hypocritical of parents and medical professionals to assume that biological roots won't matter to the "products" of the cryobanks' service, when the longing for a biological relationship is what brings customers to the banks in the first place. We offspring are recognizing the right that was stripped from us at birth -- the right to know who both our parents are.
- The Academic Boycott Debate (November 28, 2006)
An excellent summary and commentary on a debate at Ryerson University about whether Israel should be subjected to an academic boycott because of its human rights violations.
- Breaking the Spell of Stupid Opinions (2006)
When someone is outside the hold of a stupid opinion, its inanity is so apparent that one wonders how it could ever be held by anyone. But when people are caught believing something that isn't reality-based, most believe it far more rigidly than they believe facts.
- On Handcuffed and Felonious Children (February 9, 2005)
Arresting young children for a crayon drawing, not unlike the games of hangman we once all played, is the ultimate meaning and logic of Zero Tolerance. Zero tolerance involves the application of law in an extreme and uncompromising manner to any activity, violent or not, that is deemed to be anti-social.
- Right-Wing Thought Police Assault Free Speech on Campus (February 1, 2005)
he Orwellian campaign to portray the expression of views in the university that run contrary to those ruling the country as a lack of "academic freedom."
- Disaster and Mental Health (2005)
The continuing Israeli military occupation of Gaza is the cause of deep and widespread trauma for Palestinian children and adults.
Selected Websites and Organizations
- This is a small sampling of organizations and websites concerned with education and children in the Connexions Directory. For more organizations and websites, check the Connexions Directory Subject Index, especially under topics such as
An online education resource centre with extensive subject guides and distance learning information. Our mission is to provide free, independent and accurate information and resources for prospective and current students (and other researchers).
- People for Education
Working together to defend fully publicly-funded education in Ontario.
Other Links & Resources
Books, Films and Periodicals
- This is a small sampling of books related to education and children in the
Connexions Online Library. For more books and other resources, check the Connexions Library
Subject Index, especially under topics such as
A New Approach to Popular Education
AH-HAH seminars are designed to organize groups of comman interests, especially workers, to come to a common understanding.
- Chomsky on MisEducation
Author: Chomsky, Noam; edited and introduced by Donald Macedo
Chomsky critiques the education system and discusses what education could be like in a democratic society.
- Class Warfare
The Assault on Canada's School
Author: Barlow, Maude; Robertson, Heather-Jane
The authors show that the attack on schools has been mounted by representatives of big business who stand to make a fortune by privatizing education, aided by the religious right, who want to control what is taught -- and not taught -- in our schools.
- Descent into Discourse
The Reification of Language and the Writing of Social History
Author: Palmer, Brian
Critique of postmodernist and poststructuralist approaches in history.
- How 2 Take an Exam... & Remake the World
Author: Ollman, Bertell
- A Manual on Nonviolence and Children
Author: Judson, Stephanie; Paul, Paula J.
The authors felt that an important way of building a peaceful world would be to develop a program for young children. It would help children and their caregivers develop non-violent attitudes and skills.
- Objectivity and Liberal Scholarship
Author: Chomsky, Noam
Chomsky's classic analysis of the liberal scholarship that justified American foreign policy and aggression during the 1960s.
- The Origins of Post-Modernity
Author: Anderson, Perry
Perry Anderson's book outlines the cultural changes that have accompanied the victory of global capitalism.
- Pedagogy of the Oppressed
Author: Freire, Paulo
Freire maintains that every human being, no matter or "ignorant" or submerged in the "culture of silence," is capable of looking critically at the world in a dialogical encounter with others, and that provided with the proper tools for such an encounter, can gradually perceive his personal and social reality and deal critically with it.
- Roots of Empathy
Changing the World Child by Child
Author: Gordon, Mary
Roots of Empathy looks at eliminating crime and changing the world by starting with a compassionate environment for children.
- Schooling for "Good Rebels"
Socialist Education for Children in the United States, 1900-1920
Author: Teitelbaum, Kenneth
Teitelbaum captures in detail the spirited devotion and revolutionary fervor of the Socialist Sunday School movement whose themes of solidarity, cooperation, and concern for others are badly needed today. Socialist Sunday Schools were part of a thriving radical culture which included daily newspapers, clubs, lectures, festivals and parades.
Author: Sale, Kirkpatrick
The rise and development of the Students for a Democratic Society, the organization that became the major expression of the American left in the 1960s -- its passage from student protest to institutional resistance to revolutionary activism, and its ultimate impact on American politics and life.
- Spying 101
The RCMP's Secret Activities at Canadian Universities 1917 - 1997
Author: Hewitt, Steve
If you attended a Canadian university in the past eighty years, it's possible that, unbeknownst to you, Canadian security agents were surveying you, your fellow students, and your professors for 'subversive' tendencies and behaviour. Since the end of the First World War, members of the RCMP have infiltrated the campuses of Canada's universities and colleges to spy, meet informants, gather information, and on occasion, to attend classes. Why they were there is the subject of this book.
- Street children
New Internationalist April 2005 - #377
A look at the lives of street children around the world. Discussion of the challenges they face day-to-day and what some are forced to do to survive.
Author: Neill, A. S.
- Vanguard of Retrogression
"Postmodern" Fictions as Ideology in the Era of Fictitious Capital
Author: Goldner, Loren
When one probes the terms of the debate, what is truly amazing is that the ostensibly anti-Eurocentric multiculturalists are, without knowing it, purveying a remarkably Eurocentric version of what the Western tradition really is. The ultimate theoretical sources of today's multiculturalism are two very white and very dead European males, Friedrich Nietzsche and Martin Heidegger.
- We Make the Road By Walking
Conversations on education and social change
Author: Horton, Myles; Freire, Paul
Horton, the founder of the Highlander Folk School, and Freire, a Brazilian education leader, are from two different backgrounds, but their shared views on the use of participatory education in bringing about social change are the basis for this thought-provoking book.
Learning from our History
Falsifying History and Ourselves: Anti-Democratic Propaganda in the Classroom - Contrary to the views promoted by FHAO, the true facts about Germany during the Holocaust show that 1) working class Germans fought the Nazis; 2) anti-Semitism did not come from ordinary people; and 3) anti-Semitism was a weapon used by Germany's industrial and aristocratic elite to attack not only the Jewish minority but the entire working class.
Learning for the Revolution - Socialist Sunday Schools were part of a thriving radical culture which included daily newspapers, clubs, lectures, festivals and parades..
Ontological “Difference” and the Neo-Liberal War on the Social - It was 1971. We were in our early 20’s and we were mad. After the seeming prelude to apocalypse we had just lived through, who, at the time, would have believed that we were at the beginning of three decades (and counting) in which, in the U.S. at least, mass movements would all but disappear from the streets? Even today, the evanescence of the world-wide mood of “1968” seems slightly incredible.
The Student Movement of the Thirties - Most of the references one hears to the student movement of the thirties are quite wrong in one basic respect: they speak as if “the thirties” represented a single, homogeneous period for the student movement. But the biggest single fact about the history of this movement is that it went through a sweeping change in spirit, methods, and politics, which changed its face completely in mid-course.
Resources for Activists
The Connexions Calendar - An event calendar for activists.
Media Names & Numbers - A comprehensive directory of Canada's print and broadcast media. (CX5857).
Sources - A directory that enables journalists to find spokespersons of organizations. Organizations that list themselves in Sources signficantly increase their odds of getting called by reporters when they are doing a story of their issues..
Donate or Volunteer
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