A gradual consensus emerged among business and civic elites, shared by many educational leaders, that the nation should use the schools to improve the economy by improving student achievement. The movement for accountability in schools had origins in several key influences that can be traced to the 1950s. Curricular struggles of past and present are fought over issues of curricular hegemony, over whose version of 'the American way' will be taught in schools. The New Right called for a much smaller federal government role in education, championed an extremist position against 'secular humanism', and favored active censorship and teaching of creationism. The accountability phase of school reform is the most recent episode in a long history that has generally moved in the direction of greater supervision and surveillance of teachers and students via administrative control.