Book review: Marketing schools, marketing cities: who wins and who loses when schools become urban amenities
Billingham, Chase M.
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Billingham, Chase M. 2013. Marketing schools, marketing cities: who wins and who loses when schools become urban amenities. City & Community, vol. 12:no. 4:ppg. 406–407
In recent years, urban scholars have begun to draw the links between the contemporary school reform movement and the return of the middle class to inner-city neighborhoods. Maia Bloomfield Cucchiara has been at the forefront of attempts to bridge the gap between these research domains, and Marketing Schools, Marketing Cities represents an important culmination of that effort. Drawing primarily on data from participant observation and in-depth interviews with parents, teachers, municipal leaders, and school district administrators, Cucchiara skillfully details one city's campaign to rebrand its public elementary schools in a deliberate attempt to attract and retain professional families with children, and she provides a thorough consideration of both the benefits to the city that result from such marketing drives and the substantial inequalities that can emerge when the preferences of the affluent are privileged above those of working-class families. Along the way, she uses her findings to present broad discussions of issues ranging from the proper goals of urban education policy to the meaning of citizenship in contemporary American society.
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