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The Vanishing Middle ClassPrejudice and Power in a Dual Economy$
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Peter Temin

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780262036160

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262036160.001.0001

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Public Education

Public Education

(p.115) 10 Public Education
The Vanishing Middle Class

Peter Temin

The MIT Press

The United States has a dual education system; the FTE sector sends its children to suburban public and private schools, and the low-wage sector sends its children to failing urban public schools. This dual system was created in response to the Great Migration as whites left inner cities to incoming black families. It was sustained by the Supreme Court and federal support for suburban growth. City schools are deprived of support and increasingly fail to educate black and brown children properly. Poor low-wage families with incarcerated fathers are forced to use failing schools, and their children grow up to be imprisoned. Reform efforts aim for quick results and fail spectacularly. Charter schools—private public schools—have widely varied effects.

Keywords:   Urban public schools, Great Migration, Supreme Court, incarcerated fathers, failing schools, charter schools

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