School's in: The History of Summer Education in American Public Schools
Why is summer a time of leisure or work rather than schooling for most students in the United States today? Kenneth Gold offers a fascinating and complex account of the history of summer education that rejects the pervasive myth that summer vacation is a natural vestige of agrarian America and highlights an historic tension over the presence and absence of summer education in American public schools. School's In unravels the ideologies and politics surrounding the nineteenth-century demise of summer terms and the social concerns and conditions that gave rise to twentieth-century summer schools whose remedial features remain familiar today. « 'School's In' is a wonderfully insightful exploration of the history of summer education. Kenneth Gold has unearthed the many ways in which summer school has shaped the American educational experience, from nineteenth century rural schools that focused on academic subjects to turn-of-the-century vacation schools that emphasized curricular innovation and change. With the eagle eye of the social historian, he provides the reader with careful case studies of the bureaucratization of summer education across the course of the twentieth century. He also shows how summer schools became part of compensatory education during the War on Poverty, and recent efforts to promote academic excellence in the nation's public schools. (William J. Reese, University of Wisconsin) « Educators and the public are increasingly insisting that elementary and secondary students who need extra assistance should be sent to summer schools. Now they will have an excellent and balanced analysis of the complex evolution of the idea of summer learning and schoolvacations. Kenneth M. Gold has produced a superb analysis that is a must read for policymakers, scholars, and interested parents. (Maris Vinovskis, Professor of History, University of Michigan)
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