Over the past fifty years, the “special status” of education decision-making has been eroded. Once the province of local and state school boards, decisions about schools and schooling have begun to emerge in every level and branch of government. In The End of Exceptionalism in American Education, Jeffrey R. Henig traces the roots of this tectonic shift in school governance.
Carefully reasoned, astutely observed, and thoughtfully presented, this volume promises to become a classic work in our understanding of education policy—and an invaluable resource for those seeking to influence its future trajectory.
In this elegantly argued treatise, the ever-thoughtful Jeff Henig makes a powerful case that a fundamental shift in the organization, funding, and evaluation of schooling is altering the scope and nature of American education. This is a book that every policy maker, reformer, and advocate for change would be wise to heed. — Frederick M. Hess, resident scholar and director of education, American Enterprise Institute (AEI)
The intensity of education reform creates a climate of seeming chaos. Jeff Henig, a brilliant policy analyst, deftly shows us which way the wind is actually blowing. His analysis of the growing shift of educational governance from school boards to general purpose institutions is fascinating and has compelling implications for the future. — Paul Reville, Secretary of Education, Commonwealth of Massachusetts
The End of Exceptionalism in American Education is an integrated, coherent analysis of the entire changing ecology for school governance. It provides a new perspective that transcends the old paradigm of centralization versus decentralization. — Michael W. Kirst, president, California State Board of Education, and professor emeritus, education and business administration, Stanford University
Henig’s skillful analysis demonstrates that institutions matter—a perspective often missing from studies of education policy. The result is a masterful overview of executives, legislatures, and courts from Washington, DC, to city hall and their role in shaping policy choices and mobilizing diverse interests. — Lorraine M. McDonnell, professor of political science, University of California, Santa Barbara