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Askwith Education Forum

Education, Truth, and the Future of Democracy

Expert in the field of education ethics explore critical questions around the role of schools and universities in promoting democracy

What roles can schools and universities play in helping to shore up democracies — whether in the United States or in countries around the world? Schools should be — can be — key engines for knowledge-building and for producing engaged democratic citizens. What challenges do they face in achieving these aims, and what can we learn from their failures, both historically and today? How should we think about current political activity — from governors and university presidents to legislative sessions to local school board meetings — focused very specifically on education policies and practices?

When the political discourse includes K-12 and college curricula, counseling services, bathroom and sports team access, book selection, equity and inclusion policies, school safety, tenure policies, and school and university governance, it begs the question: Are these admirable exercises of democratic activism by engaged citizens, attacks on education in service of misinformation and demonstrable untruths — or both (or neither)? Join us for a rich conversation that will explore these and other critical questions and help each of us contribute to a positive path forward. 


Neema Avashia
Ethnic Studies Coach, Boston Public Schools; and author

Sigal Ben-Porath
Professor, Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania

John Silvanus Wilson Jr.
Executive Director of Millennium Leadership Initiative, American Association of State Colleges and Universities 


Meira Levinson
Juliana W. and William Foss Thompson Professor of Education and Society, Harvard Graduate School of Education

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