The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Lupton Renaissance Fund Update

Fordham Foundation Releases New Work by Ellington

Dr. Lucien Ellington, UTC educations professor served as co-editor of Where Did Social Studies Go Wrong? and he contributed an essay to Terrorism, Despots, and Democracy: What Our Children Need to Know, two new publications released recently by the Thomas Fordham B. Foundation.

“Most Americans agree that restoring history and civics to their rightful places in the school curriculum is one of today’s most urgent education challenges,” says U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander. “These two Fordham volumes go a long way toward explaining what’s gone wrong in the field of social studies and what must be done to set it right.”

Where Did Social Studies Go Wrong? consists of penetrating critiques by renegade social studies educators who fault the teaching methods and curricular ideas of their field, with suggestions of how it can be reformed. These analysts probe the causes of American students’ limited knowledge of history and civics, and lay primary responsibility at the feet of the social studies “establishment” itself.

Ellington and co-editor James Lerning, of Where Did Social Studies Go Wrong? state in their introduction, “Today’s social studies is a muddled, ineffectual curricular and pedagogical wasteland rather than a coherent, content-based body of important knowledge that is effectively taught and thoroughly learned.”

Online versions of both Education Daily and the Wall Street Journal have carried Ellington’s thoughts on his new publication.

Terrorists, Despots, and Democracy: What Our Children Need to Know includes the voices of political leaders, practitioners and cultural analysts discussing what schools should teach about U.S. history, American ideals, and civic life in the wake of 9/11, the war on terror, and the conflict in Iraq. The 29 contributors represent a wide variety of fields and political persuasions, from former Humanities Endowment chair Lynne Cheney to author and commentator Richard Rodriguez, from JFK Library historian Sheldon Stern to political scientist James Q. Wilson.

“On September 16th the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C. will sponsor an invitation-only forum based on the book. Along with me and my coeditor, James Leming, confirmed panelists for the discussion include: Senator Alexander, Former Secretary of Education William Bennett Richard Theisen, a former President of the National Council for the Social Studies,” Ellington said.

The American Enterprise Institute offers more online information about the forum.