Race and Policy


  • Ernest R. House University of Colorado




Beliefs, Educational History, Educational Policy, Elementary Secondary Education, Equal Education, Racial Bias, Racial Discrimination, Social Attitudes


Beliefs about race have played a central role in American history, literature, and education. Racial beliefs are embedded in the national identity in complex and disguised ways. These beliefs attribute presumed character traits to African Americans and other minorities, who are thought of as different in character and ability, especially the ability to govern themselves. These beliefs lead to education policies which separate, differentiate, and mandate different curricula and treatment for minorities, policies justified as being fair and democratic. These beliefs influence not only curriculum content, but how the schools are organized, financed, and administered at a deeper level than is commonly understood.


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Author Biography

Ernest R. House, University of Colorado

Ernest R. House is a professor in the School of Education at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Previously, he was at the Center for Instructional Research and Curriculum Evaluation (CIRCE) at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.He has been a visiting scholar at UCLA, Harvard, and New Mexico, as well as in England, Australia, Spain, Sweden, Austria, and Chile. His primary interests are evaluation and policy analysis. Books authored include Evaluating with Validity (1980), Jesse Jackson and the Politics of Charisma (1988), Professional Evaluation: Social Impact and Political Consequences (1993). His most recent book, Schools for Sale was published in 1998. He is the 1989 recipient of the Harold E. Lasswell Prize presented by Policy Sciences and the 1990 recipient of the Paul F. Lazarsfeld Award for Evaluation Theory, presented by the American Evaluation Association. He was editor of New Directions in Program Evaluation (1982 to 1985) and columnist for Evaluation Practice (1984-89). Major studies he has directed or particpated in include evaluation of the Illinois Gifted Program for the Illinois legislature (1968-1972), assessment of the Michigan Accountability Program for the National Education Association (1974), critique of the National Follow Through Evaluation for the Ford Foundation (1977), audit of the Promotional Gates Program evaluation for the Mayor's Office in New York City (1981), assessment of environmental education policies in Europe for OECD (1992), and evaluation of science, engineering, and technology education programs across federal departments for the Federal Coordinating Council for Science, Engineering, and Technology in Washington (1993).




How to Cite

House, E. R. (1999). Race and Policy. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 7, 16. https://doi.org/10.14507/epaa.v7n16.1999