The common good mission of education requires attention to issues of equity in access and opportunity and recognition that one of the greatest outcomes of public education is a citizenry that can govern itself in a fair and just manner. Public governance of public education is one way to give citizens some control over how their future society develops. It also provides avenues to protect the financial interests of taxpayers who pay for public schooling. Yet, the pull between private and public approaches to the governance of public education is a constant tension.
One question we ask as policy analysts is how do we balance this public-private nexus and to what end? Do we eliminate elected school boards and give mayors and or governors the power to appoint our school trustees? What are the advantages of such a move? What are the disadvantages? Do we turn to private organizations such as management organizations to manage our schools? Do we move toward a system of schooling where individual parents choose individual schools? If so, what effect does this have on our goals for diversity and social cohesion? Who chooses and who looses in this scenario?
There is much already written on all of these issues. You can find all sorts of articles and information on the privatization of public schooling at the National Center for Study of Privatization in Education (http://www.ncspe.org/).