Military Academies… who says educational reform needs to be anything other than ideological?


While military academies have been part of Chicago schools since 1999, the surge in efforts to create more is palpable, and Arne Duncan is a big supporter (no surprise there). The latest development is the financial incentive to local often financially strapped school districts to open charter schools run by the Marine Corps. Little to no evidence suggests that these schools improve the quality of education or academic achievement for students. However, Congress has passed a bill that supports increases in Junior ROTC. In the absence of evidence that such military academies are better schools, one has to conclude that they serve other purposes–fueling the military ranks and using vulnerable students for the benefit of the corporate-military apparatus.

Evaluations of all charter schools, including military academies need to consider a broad context and consider their worth and value by taking into consideration more than the simplistic representations of their value and dig through a state supported rhetoric that is at best diversionary.

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