Talk:State school

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German Church kindergartens[edit]

Have added some specific information as to the funding principles and so on. Added the fact that some kindergartens are run by other religious groups. Also the "often controversially" I mellowed to "sometimes" and added where that criticism comes from (mainly Humanist organisations). In fact there is very little public criticism of church-run kindergartens as the so-called "Subsidiaritätsprinzip" is widely accepted. "Subsidiaritätsprinzip" means that the state is best left out of public affairs if there are private initiatives of citizens who can provide the same standard of service. It is a very German way of limiting state control over society and the public sphere. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:21, 5 June 2014 (UTC)

Ranking/benchmark section[edit]

is section out (written by out, it's not well written, there's no sources cited, and it does not seem very informative.Liamkf 21:30, 22 March 2006 (UTC)


Idc think this article could use a section - "history of public education" or something similiar →Raul654 05:40, Feb 16, 2004 (UTC)

No doubt we will want to split the article to make it more manageable, e.g. Public education in the United States, History of public education in the United States, etc. The article is somewhat awkwardly organized right now, and could probably benefit from being broken up. Public education 00:23, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I have started to expand this page. Pehaps there should be a "Public Education" 'stub' and this article can largely be moved to a ne in the United States". Other articles can be made for Canada (including Francophone Canada), the United Kingdom, Australia, and so forth...and articles on Continental European education can be integrated with articles about French "lyceés", German "gymnasium", and so forth. I am less aware of Japan, China, and other systems - but they can form the basis for further articles.


If and only if we have enough material to create non-stubs for those seperate articles. Remember, subpages are considered harmful. So for now, leave everything here, and maybe (way down the road) if we have enough material to fill out Public education in Japan and public education in Germany and public education in Russia et al, we might consider moving the stuff out. →Raul654 20:25, Feb 18, 2004 (UTC)

Goverment's role in what students learn[edit]

The government of any administrative region, state, provincial or national, depending on the powers of each, will try to influence what is taught in public schools to one degree or another. Generally, public education is designed to give the basic literacy and numeracy skills to the masses, and offer specialist subjects to those who are so inclined, and intellectually capable. There is usually a standardised curriculum, which will apply to both public and private schools. This is to ensure consistency and fairness when considering performance of the individual. At a senior level, subjects are usually moderated, to ensure work of a similar standard across a region recieves a similar mark. There is also a process of scaling, so that easy subjects, with a high average mark, will not be unfairly compared to a harder subject with a lower average mark. For example, an student who achieves a 20/20 for an easy subject like Health Education or similar, will have their mark scaled down so their overall performance is more equal to students achieving an 18/20 for a hard subject like physics.


Being married to a teacher in Wisconsin, I hear about school vourchers quite a bit. One of my wife's complaints revolves around the fact that private schools are not under the same regulations that public schools are. For instance, ESL programs, children with emotional disabilities - any of the "unfunded mandates" probably apply. I don't feel right adding to the article, but wanted to point out this other aspect.

Looking at this section, it seems to have a serious NPOV problem. "again, these arguments are unfortunately flawed in that they ignore the fact that vouchers leave open the freedom of the family to choose the private school." Firstly this counter doesn't provide any information all it says is "choice choice, choice, choice", secondly this would not be considered a neutral point of view. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:11, 5 July 2008 (UTC)

Need a Reference or Link[edit]

The section on vouchers contains the statement "a recent publication by the United States Department of Education has admitted that the average cost of public education per pupil is slightly more than double the cost per pupil of a private education, even though public schools have more students per teacher." Hum ... a link or a tiltle of the publication would be good here.

Absolutely. Furthermore, the entire section on vouchers is missing any hint of balance. The first three paragraphs cover the arguments of those in favor of vouchers. Only one remaining paragraph scantly mentions the arguments of those opposed to vouchers, yet the author ends this meager paragraph with a rebuttal to its content. This section belongs in an opinion piece, not an article. --Ltellez 16:03, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

Need Foreign POV[edit]

This article, as I have written it now, is probably very heavy on the American POV - sorry, I can't help it in this case. I'd like to see a country by country listing. →Raul654 07:48, Feb 17, 2004 (UTC)

One easy step would be to remove the reference to twelth grade and k12. These are very specific American terms. I suggest saying secondary school instead.JohnC (talk) 08:32, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

Secondary school isn't a term typically used in the does that suggest a European bias? I think Raul654's original edit is fine.Kcchief915 (talk) 02:12, 16 September 2010 (UTC)

A concern[edit]

Ok, I have a serious problem with the second sentence of this article:

It [public education] is necessary because modern society requires people capable of reading, writing, and doing basic mathematics.

It seems to me that this is an opinion being presented as a fact. I, for one, would dispute that public schools are necessary. I had changed this a few days ago so it said something to the effect that "proponents of public education argue this, but its critics respond with this". Someone evidently was not pleased with this and felt the need to change it back. I am just curious as to why this was, and whether or not we can reword it again so that it is objective but is also worded in a way that we can all live with? In any case, I don't think it is responsible to be making definitive assertions about how public education is necessary when this is a point that is up for debate.

We certainly need more input on public school systems from larger industrial and pre-industrial societies. English public schools form the basis for much of India, where are the documents for those 1.5 billion people?

I'll try to add as I can to this article but help is appreciated... -- --DennisDaniels 03:17, 31 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Language like "states provided free schooling" is deceptive. A state provides nothing. It can tax to pay for something but it has no inherent wealth from which people can collect. Any government program, whether schools or proposed-medicare, is paid for by citizens. Citizens receive nothing for free from their governments. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:06, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

Origins of public education in the United States[edit]

As a side note, a Libertarian friend named Josh Dunn informed me that the public education system, beginning with the original one-room classrooms, was greatly influenced by Protestants seeking to indoctrinate children, and that therefore most of the private schools in that early era were organized by religious sects (especially Catholics). You would have to contact him for more info to corroborate this. Here is another article written by him: Public education 00:28, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The External Links references to "The Story of American Public Education" and "History of Public Education in the United States" are defunct. RFSJr (talk) 19:31, 30 September 2014 (UTC)

Opposition to public education[edit]

I added a see also pointing to Alliance for the Separation of School & State, since it seems that opposition to public education is understated in this article at present. Remember me 21:42, 14 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Too US centered[edit]

Especially the history section is to US centered? It is not --Jasper den Ouden

"Wikipedia is written collaboratively by volunteers from all around the world. With rare exceptions, its articles can be edited by anyone with access to the Internet, simply by clicking the edit this page link."

This is an interesting read also:

It seems like it would be better to move sections on individual countries to their own articles as above and list links to the various national systems on the public education overview page.

On the other hand, I personally hate to criticize if I am not willing to work. I realize that wiki volunteers are unpaid, and I appreciate so much what they do here. Thanks for all you do! --David

On a similar note, does anyone else think that the Vouchers and Abolition sections should be cut.

Both have their own separate articles and both are US centric in their current states (the vouchers section is not just in writing but also content, hardly anywhere else on earth uses vouchers or has an abolition campaign). Its not that I think they are particularly bias, just irrelevant.


CaptinJohn (talk) 10:46, 7 February 2008 (UTC)

Still far too U.S. centered, far too focused on a few current (and in some cases marginal) controversies, etc. Not a topic where I feel I have enough expertise to write the article we should have, but surely someone does. - Jmabel | Talk 23:01, 5 August 2008 (UTC)


Public spending on education in 2005[edit]

I don't particularly like color-coded bubble maps, but even independent of that, the map "Public spending on education in 2005" doesn't seem very informative. Per capita numbers would be much more meaningful, and ones that were further adjusted for purchasing power parity would be even more meaningful. Otherwise, mostly what this says is that the U.S. is large and rich. - Jmabel | Talk 22:01, 5 August 2008 (UTC)

Exactly right. First of all the map isn't very clear. I can only guess that the number of dots (e.g. three red dots) denoted a multiple level of spending (e.g. thrice that of one red dot). The US per capita spends less than the UK, yet the US is set out to be the world leader. This map suggests that a country with 2,000,000 people spending $1 per person offers a better education than a nation with one person spending $1,000,000 per person. I suggest that we replace this map with another more informative one. Any suggestions? Let me know what you all think. Declan Davis (talk) 19:15, 9 September 2008 (UTC)
+1. I came to this talk page to make the above suggestion, but I see it was already made in 2008. How about just taking down the map? That would be better than a nearly useless presentation of data. The relative sizes of dots are misleading. The legend is lacking. The referenced data source provides much richer data if anyone wants to improve the map. I'll just try to delete the map if no one has a better suggestion. I think it detracts from the page. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Projanen (talkcontribs) 06:08, 7 April 2011 (UTC)
I removed the uninformative "bubble map." projanen (talk) 05:16, 1 May 2011 (UTC)

Present and former communist countries[edit]

No mention in the article right now of the present and former communist countries. Since this is one of their few areas of clear positive achievement, that's quite an omission. - Jmabel | Talk 22:53, 5 August 2008 (UTC)

Mention of libertarians[edit]

The mention of u.s. libertarians at the end of the intro seems a bit jarring. I'm sure there are arguments against public education, but that paragraph, if anything, seems to put them in a bad light. Can anyone think of a way to fix this? Bob A (talk) 03:30, 10 October 2009 (UTC)

I agree...I prefer my view of advanced babysitting. Kcchief915 (talk) 23:52, 17 September 2010 (UTC)

Merger proposal[edit]

We should merge these two pages. They are almost exactly the same thing, and both pages could benefit from combining the sources from the two pages. Oldag07 (talk) 05:55, 30 October 2009 (UTC)

Yes, but not under the name 'public school' or 'public education'. That term is ambiguous, as 'public' in the UK means 'private' in the US. We need some other wording, perhaps 'state schools' vs. 'private schools', which are unambiguous, even if they aren't both used in the same country. — kwami (talk) 20:10, 3 June 2010 (UTC)
Since there was no opposition after 7 months, I went ahead and merged. I also merged w 'state school', since the articles were either complementary when covering different countries, or redundant when covering the same countries. I merged to this article, as it had the longest page history, but moved it to 'state school' to avoid ambiguity. (The page history of the old 'state school' article is preserved at the redirect 'state education'.) The sections on the US and UK need clean up; those sections as well as France and Germany might need to be trimmed down, as the info is duplicated in the national education articles. — kwami (talk) 21:41, 3 June 2010 (UTC)

Public school in Australia[edit]

I have an issue with note 1:

In much of the Commonwealth, including Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and the United Kingdom, the terms 'public education', 'public school' and 'independent school' are used for private schools, that is, schools primarily funded by tuition, endowment or charitable donations and not through public means.

Well, I can only offer my own anecdotal evidence, but I'm from Australia and have never heard of "public school" being used to refer to "Private schools." I can't say with certainty what the other countries say, but school paid for by the Government is called "Public school", and school paid for with tuition fees is "Private school". Anoldtreeok (talk) 00:46, 3 January 2012 (UTC)

Definitely for Australia, and I believe New Zealand as well. Additionally, the article specifies that "public" means "state run" in its own section on South Africa, and in the section on the United Kingdom seems to specify that this note refers only England and Wales. Various "Education in ..." articles agree. I think that's enough evidence to change it to just read United Kingdom unless references are provided. --Qetuth (talk) 13:52, 26 January 2012 (UTC)

Public school in the UK[edit]

The section on Scotland is incorrect. Schools funded by the state are known as 'state schools' and fee-paying schools are 'independent schools'. However, in general usage, the term independent schools is rarely used. Independent schools are either referred to as private schools or public schools. If anything, the term 'public school' is more frequently used to describe independent schools in Scotland as there is not the distinction between private, public and independent that exists in England. The term 'public school' would never correctly be used to describe a state school - they are known as state schools or, slightly archaically, comprehensives. This error is repeated throughout wikipedia's references to schooling in Scotland. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:52, 17 March 2014 (UTC)

Not so. Historically the term "public school" unequivocally meant a state school but has lost currency more recently, presumbly because of potential confusion with the usage of the term south of the border. It has never had any degree of currency in reference to a private or independent school within Scotland and any such reference if made would overwhelmingly be to establishments in England. For these reasons the term is now simply largely avoided with reference to schools of any type in Scotland. The article reflects this correctly. Mutt Lunker (talk) 11:28, 17 March 2014 (UTC)

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