SOL STERN TALKS ABOUT HIS
NEW BOOK

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Communications Department
212-599-7000

Book Info:

Available at
Amazon.com
ISBN: 1-893554-07-4
6 x 9 hardcover
230 pages
U.S $24.95
Publication date:
May 2003
Bookstore Categories:
Education/Public Policy

Breaking Free
Public School Lessons and the Imperative of School Choice

By Sol Stern
Contributing editor, City Journal,
and Manhattan Institute Senior Fellow

Sol Stern’s Breaking Free explores the growing demand for school choice among poor families in the inner city. Stern describes the dramatic successes and occasional failures of this “new civil rights movement” in three key cities: Milwaukee, Cleveland, and New York.

Filled with timely insights and human drama, Breaking Free vividly describes how cash-starved Catholic schools in the South Bronx are performing small educational miracles every day with children the public schools have given up on. In Milwaukee and Cleveland, Stern finds that the voucher program has rescued large numbers of poor minority children from violent, chaotic and failing public schools and allowed them to attend parochial and private schools where high expectations often result in high achievement.

Drawing on personal observation and intimate conversations with parents, students and educators, Breaking Free is the first book to transform school choice from an abstract policy issue into a question of basic personal freedom, and indeed, for minority children at the bottom of the social ladder, into a question of survival.  Equal access to the American Dream through quality education is, Sol Stern convinces us, the unfinished business before us.

Sol Stern has written for the New York Times Magazine, The New Republic, and City Journal.  His articles on schools helped persuade former New York mayor, Rudolph Giuliani to support vouchers for poor children. Mr. Stern is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and lives with his family in New York City.

 

Breaking Free.

Advance Praise for Breaking Free

"Parental choice in education is the leading civil rights issue of our day, and Sol Stern's observations—drawn from across decades of experiences as public school student in World War II New York, sixties radical, writer, and father—explain why so many of us view school choice as a moral imperative."
William J. Bennett
Former U.S. Secretary of Education

"What a powerful and timely book! The Supreme Court says school choice is constitutional. Now Sol Stern explains why it's the essential alternative to a smug, sclerotic and monopolistic public-education establishment that never puts the kids' or parents' interests first. If you didn't already understand the need to carve an exit door for children, Stern's harrowing tales will open your eyes and boost your blood pressure."
Chester E. Finn, Jr.
Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University &
President, Thomas B. Fordham Foundation

"It's harder to learn what happens inside big-city schools than to get information from the battlefront. Unlike the modern army, urban schools don't allow reporters to embed themselves within their operations. In his riveting insider's account of New York City's public schools, Sol Stern brilliantly exploits the access of a parent and a teacher's spouse with the observational skills of a first-rate reporter to explain to us what we have long feared but not really understood."
Paul E. Peterson
Henry Lee Shattuck Professor of Government
Director, Program on Education Policy and Governance

 


City Journal