Education privatization in the United States: Increasing saturation and segregation

Frank Adamson, Meredith Galloway


This article outlines different forms of education privatization operating globally, examines their prevalence within the United States, and analyzes whether student marginalization and segregation occurs at the local level. We analyze six U.S. districts with higher saturation levels of charter schools, the most predominant type of privatization (Camden, NJ, Washington DC, Flint, MI, Detroit, MI, Natomas, CA, and Oakland, CA). We find education privatization increasing in the US, but unevenly dispersed, with charter schools concentrated primarily in urban areas serving students of color. Furthermore, segregation in education remains a major issue for all types of schools, with students of color in urban contexts often attending intensely segregated schools (over 90% students of color). Instead of mitigating the segregation problem, student selection by charter school appears to exacerbate it, specifically for special education students.


Access to Education; Charter Schools; English Learners; Neoliberalism; Privatization; School Choice; School Resegregation; Special Education

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Copyright (c) 2019 Frank Adamson, Meredith Galloway

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