A New Regime
A New Regime
This chapter discusses the changes in school discipline that have taken place recently, as well as competing explanations for these trends, focusing on recorded levels of school crime across the United States, public fear of school crime, and perceptions of general failures in public education. Given that fears of crime have risen and punitive policies have grown without corresponding increases in actual crime, the most satisfying explanations for the new school discipline regime focus on postmodern insecurities and anxieties over crime, poverty, and school failure. The chapter presents prior evidence on the effects of this new discipline regime, and discusses sociological and philosophical work on the functions of mass education, which clarifies the ways that schools socialize students to learn their roles in society and raises questions about what life lessons students might take away from contemporary school discipline and security.
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