From Family Collapse to America's Decline

The Educational, Economic, and Social Costs of Family Fragmentation


Series: New Frontiers in Education

Very high rates of family fragmentation in the United States are subtracting from what very large numbers of students are learning in school and forever holding them back in many other ways. This in turn is damaging the country economically by making us less primed for innovation while also making millions of Americans less competitive in an increasingly demanding worldwide marketplace. All of which is leading – and can only lead – to deepening class divisions in a nation which has never viewed itself or operated in such splintered ways. What can be done to reverse these severely destructive trends, starting with reducing the enormous number of children forced to grow up with only one parent living under the same roof? What educational reforms are most likely to help under such demanding circumstances? And as dangerous as the situation is, why do leaders in education and other fields persist, for both understandable and less-worthy reasons, in dancing around profoundly important questions of family breakdown to the point of contortion and ultimately failure?
  • R&L Education; September 2011
  • ISBN: 9781607093633
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF or secure EPUB format
  • Title: From Family Collapse to America's Decline
  • Series: New Frontiers in Education
  • Author: Mitch Pearlstein
  • Imprint: R&L Education

In The Press

The American economy remains sluggish and, from all over the political spectrum, particularly the left, people have turned their attention to inequality. The Occupy Wall Street movement, though without actual plans for reform, emphasizes the growing inequality between the top one percent and the 99 percent of Americans below them, with the implication that income growth among top earners means less for everybody else....Mitch Pearlstein, who worked in the Department of Education under Reagan and Bush I, and then founded the Center of the American Experiment in Minneapolis, sees this as a growing problem. His new book, From Family Fragmentation to America's Decline, laments this inability of many to climb their way up from the bottom rungs of society.

About The Author

Mitch Pearlstein is president of Center of the American Experiment, a think tank in Minneapolis he founded in 1990.