Public Education

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Kenny Truong
PLS 201 Professor Murniz Allen Coson
Public education has been an important part of our country throughout history. After the Declaration of Independence, fourteen states had their own constitutions by 1791. Seven of those states had specific provisions regarding education. Thomas Jefferson was one of the first American leaders to suggest a public school system. He believed that education should be under the control of the government, available to all people regardless of their status in society, and free from religious biases. Before the 1840s, the education system was only available to the wealthy. However, many reformers wanted all children in the United States to receive the benefits of education. Two reformers, Horace Mann and Henry Barnard created the Common School Journal, which was a newspaper that brought the issue of education out into the public. Because of their efforts, free public education at the elementary level was available for children by the end of the 19th century. Throughout the 1900s, many schools were created due to increased demand for skilled workers. As the 20th century progressed, many states began to enact legislation requiring people to go to school, and enrollment soared. That is how our public education system got to where it is today. There are still many issues regarding our public education system, such as some areas teaching better than others, and some classrooms having better materials than others. Local and Federal governments have always been involved in schools, making sure that they teach to their full potential. There are many congressional bills that have been passed, and many that are fighting to be passed. A very important bill that is out there today is the Student Bill of Rights, or H.R. 1295.

The Student Bill of Rights is a congressional bill regarding education. It was introduced on March 31st, 2011. It is sponsored by congressman Chaka Fattah. The Student Bill of Rights basically makes sure...
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