Education in a Robust Political Economy

School System Reform Journal 2016: 1-34

29 Pages Posted: 18 Sep 2012 Last revised: 26 Jan 2017

See all articles by Scott Alex Beaulier

Scott Alex Beaulier

Mercer University

Daniel J. Smith

Middle Tennessee State University - Department of Economics and Finance

Benjamin Tegethoff

Troy University

Date Written: September 17, 2012

Abstract

There is a wide consensus that the U.S. K-12 public education system is in need of fundamental reform. Reformers face two primary barriers to reform; knowledge and incentive problems. Knowledge problems represent the epistemic difficulties inherent in designing a top-down educational system meant to service the educational needs of diverse youth in a rapidly changing economy. The second is the problem of creating an education system that isn’t susceptible to the influence of special interest groups in a contemporary political democracy. We argue that the current public education system is failing precisely because it does not account for these knowledge and incentive problems in its structural design, leading to an educational system that is underperforming, uniform, and susceptible to special interest group pressures. All three outcomes are detrimental to a free society. Decentralized education is necessary for a robust educational system that can deliver quality, adaptable education that isn’t susceptible to special interest group politics.

Keywords: Education, Robust Political Economy

JEL Classification: I21, I28, P00

Suggested Citation

Beaulier, Scott Alex and Smith, Daniel J. and Tegethoff, Benjamin, Education in a Robust Political Economy (September 17, 2012). School System Reform Journal 2016: 1-34. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2147724 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2147724

Scott Alex Beaulier

Mercer University ( email )

1400 Coleman Avenue
Macon, GA 31207

Daniel J. Smith (Contact Author)

Middle Tennessee State University - Department of Economics and Finance ( email )

MTSU Box 27
1301 E. Main St.
Murfreesboro, TN 37132-0001
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.danieljosephsmith.com/

Benjamin Tegethoff

Troy University ( email )

Troy, AL
United States

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