Neoliberalism and Education

Authored by: Lawrence Blum

Handbook of Philosophy of Education

Print publication date:  October  2022
Online publication date:  October  2022

Print ISBN: 9781032000053
eBook ISBN: 9781003172246
Adobe ISBN:


 Download Chapter



Neoliberalism is an approach to social policy, now globally influential, that applies market approaches to all aspects of social life, including education. Charter schools, privately operated but publicly funded, are its most prominent manifestation in the United States. This chapter argues that neoliberal principles of competition, consumerism, and choice cannot serve as foundations of a sound and equitable public education system. Neoliberalism embraces social inequality overall and in doing so constricts any justice mission its adherents espouse in virtue of serving a relatively disadvantaged student population – by embracing a “human capital” approach as the primary good of education, creating educational inequality through (unofficially) selecting a relatively advantaged segment of the disadvantaged demographic it serves, denying the effect of poverty on educational performance, and devaluing its students’ familial ethnic cultures.

Search for more...
Back to top

Use of cookies on this website

We are using cookies to provide statistics that help us give you the best experience of our site. You can find out more in our Privacy Policy. By continuing to use the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.