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“Some U.S.policy makers were so disturbed by the power of the Civil Rights Movement that they have been revising the story ever since, implying that African American leadership did not accomplish much of substance, especially in the field of education. In this book, Kitty Kelly Epstein presents a clear record of African-American achievement in challenging inequity, even in an arena as filled with confusion as the world of U.S. public schools.” – Danny Glover, actor, producer, social activist

“Kitty Epstein tells a fascinating revisionist history of the evolution and struggles around public education. She is uniquely qualified to do so, as a central participant in the events, and as a theorist of the impact of racism in American education. Epstein joins the shortlist of social scientists who have studied their problem by embedding themselves in it personally. The result is to provide a new perspective on what educational reform requires in American cities.”  John Roemer, Elizabeth S. and A. Varick Stout, Professors of Political Science and Economics, Department of Political Science, Yale University

“Kitty Kelly Epstein is a bold and visionary activist, educator, and storyteller. In this clear account, she analyzes a history of racism in education politics in order to argue for aliving, active, and inclusive democracy. She shows us convincingly that, only by being honest about racism in our past and present, can we construct theexcellent schools that urban communities want and deserve.” Christine Sleeter, Emeritus Professor, California State University Monterey Bay, Author of ‘Multicultural Education as Social Activism”

“Kitty Kelly Epstein’s scholarship is embedded in her lifetime of active engagement in the educational civil rights struggle. Kelly Epstein deconstructs, chapter and verse, the many ‘urban myths’ about public schools held by both liberals and conservatives. In particular, she posits an alternate argument based on ‘five, basic, unchangingand generally unmentioned realities’ about U.S. education […] Epstein’s book is imbued with a ‘critical hope’ based on her existential understanding that without struggle at both the school and societal levels, there is no educational progress. She argues persuasively that rigorous critique and struggles within schools, school systems, and the society at large can providethe momentum for transformative educational and social change. Having chronicled the past successes of such progressive struggles in Oakland, she outlines the makings of a multiracial, ‘people’s program for educational change’. Her book is a clear-noted reveille for the necessary national movement for education as a civil right.” Luis O. Reyes, PhD, Former member, New York City Board of Education, Visiting Fellow, Lehman College, CUNY

“I have been assigning ‘A Different View of Urban Schools’ every semester since it came out to my students who are both future educators and scholars interested in issues of equity and diversity. Their reaction is always appreciation for the clear call to action. They meet the clarity with which Epstein analyzes issues in American education and the solutions she presents to these problems with a combination of surprise, dismay and relief.  I am delighted to have a new edition to assign.” Dr. Diana B. Waters, Faculty of Education & Difference Studies, The Philadelphia Center

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Kitty Kelly Epstein


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Website Manager- Jaron K. Epstein

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