THE “ED SCARE”: CURRICULUM, CONTROVERSY, AND DIVISIVE CONCEPTS IN PUBLIC EDUCATION IN THE 2020s

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Authors
Crone, Margaret
Issue Date
2024-05
Type
Thesis
Keywords
University of the South , American Studies Department , Sewanee Senior Honors Theses 2024 , Higher Education , African American history , LGBTQ+ , Curriculum
Abstract
Abstract: This paper examines the phenomenon known as the “Ed Scare,” a term encapsulating conservative attacks on various facets of public education in the United States. The analysis is divided into four key sections, each addressing distinct limitations imposed on education: 1) constraints on the teaching of African American History, 2) restrictions on LGBTQ+ topics, 3) book banning, and 4) the prohibition of “divisive concepts” in higher education. The study delves into the arguments and justifications employed by supporters of these conservative attacks, offering a comprehensive exploration of their motives. The paper emphasizes the broader significance of this phenomenon by exploring its profound implications on American politics and society. By scrutinizing conservative attempts to reshape the study of American history and culture, this study contributes to the ongoing discourse on education reform. Keywords: education, African American history, curriculum, LGBTQ+, book banning, American Studies, divisive concepts, Critical Race Theory, Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, secondary education, higher education.
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