Reimagining the American high school

IL 1704 - spring course

American high schools haven’t changed in 100+ years. Can we fix secondary education? There are some wild, revolutionary ideas out there. But the issues go deeper than you think.

  • Are gifted classes a good thing?
  • Adolescence: is it real?
  • Can tech level the playing field in schools?

You probably answered all of those (at least somewhat) incorrectly. Challenge your misconceptions about high school, and even your ideas about your own experience.

How could changes in education impact the world? Could it stop the “war on facts”? Reshape our values completely? You don’t need to be a future educator to explore how schools reflect, reproduce, and sometimes change both the best and the worst of our society.

Examine every angle of education with a critical eye, from the broad, deeply embedded inequity down to the very buildings we teach in. Gender studies, linguistics, psychology, education itself, sociology, public policy, architecture — it all plays a role.

This is a small group, discussion-based course. Ultimately, we’ll try to imagine: what would the perfect high school look like?