Rebuttal: Stop Comparing Same-Sex Marriage & School Reform!
It's hard for me not to think education when the topic of same-sex marriage comes up. I mean, Secretary Duncan practically made President Obama revise his position on the issue, and thereby won the 2012 campaign (right?). What more do you need?
It's a connection I've been making on and off since last year: More Lessons From The 2012 Gay Equality Campaign; Learning From The Gay Rights ...; How Vouchers Are Like Same-Sex Marriage; In Defense Of Arne ("Same-Sex") Duncan; Duncan Gets Ambushed
However, the connections only go so far, according to Fordham's Mike Petrilli, who in this new post (What can education reformers learn from the gay rights movement?) says it's understandable that folks like me (are there others?) want to make the connection but that school reform is more comparable to health care reform than a social/rights issue that doesn't cost money or have as many immediate programmatic concerns. (I'm paraphrasing.)
Petrilli's right that the same-sex/school reform comparison is a stretch -- that is sort of the point -- and education and health care are more readily conceived and compared in relation to each other. However, I'm not sure that this is always or necessarily the case.
If and when the current programmatic, policy-focused attempts to improve public education have run their course for good or ill, I can imagine a return to a more rights-focused approach to school reform, centered around parental rights or the right to equal treatment.
School integration was to my simplistic understanding fueled by a focus on student rights. The private school voucher issue is already discussed in terms of rights and equity. Law enforcement actions against parents seeking better education for their children brings up some of the same issues.
Related posts: Same-Sex Marriage Cases Hold Implications for Schools EdWeek