Zolotykh V. R. Neoconservative approaches to school education reform in the USA: political and socio-cultural aspects (.pdf)


The paper evaluates the viewpoints and proposals of American neoconservatives regarding the reform of the system of education in the 1990s. The author attempts to track the evolution of concepts and to determine the hierarchy of priorities. A detailed analysis of neoconservatives’ views on the problems of school education gives the possibility to see the features of neoconservative approaches on ideological level, as well as on the level of philosophical and cultural understanding of reality. The author describes the differences between the neo-conservative educational policy and the approaches of other groups of American conservatives to the problem. The article pays special attention to cooperation between the largest corporations and neoconservatives to promote school education reform in the 1990s. To take the interests of American businesses into account, neoconservatives are taking appropriate initiatives to reform the school system. The article examines the creation of the so-called “сounterintelligentsia” and the intent of neoconservative intellectual centres to formulate new ideas and to promote them on the market of educational services. It is vital to note the role of the Manhattan Institute that promoted the idea of school choice and an educational voucher as its top priorities. The author also analyzes the role of neoconservatives in supporting charter schools. They are well-recognized experts on the issue, and their position is strongly supported by the key neoconservative intellectual center - the Hudson Institute. An attention is paid to the analysis of documents adopted by the leadership of the Republican Party in the field of school education. The article analyzes “Goals 2000” as a key document of the party initiated by the neoconservatives. The educational policy is considered as an important factor in analyzing the conservative movement.


Key words: conservative movement, education, social policy, neoconservatives, the Republican party, school vouchers, schools-“magnets”.


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