Conflicting Functions and Processes in Education
Each society educates its children in the ways of the group and skills necessary to prosper in that society. The basic functions, or purposes, of education are the same in most societies, but the importance of these functions and the means of achieving them vary greatly across societies and even among groups within each society. Criticisms of the role of education in the process of socialization include a range of topics. The chapter focuses on two: early childhood education, and the role of technology and the media in socialization. Many groups in the educational environment vie for decision-making responsibility, and many have influence on decisions, from civic groups to religious, political, and economic groups. The Supreme Court has made many decisions regarding schools, school districts, and education. The chapter discusses two examples of school decision making that have created heated controversy in many communities and that reflect the diversity in US society: sex and drug education.