Dilemma Of Philosophy Of Education
The decreased visibility and influence of philosophy of education on the educators’ community at large needs some deliberation. Rene Arcilla (2002) opened the debate with an essay on the subject. This was discussed with a number of educators who had different opinions with some even denying that there was a malady, while others agreed that while it did exist, the causes for the same were different.
Eric Bredo argued that the problem is due to tension between philosophical credibility and making it relevant to education. The present confusion is apparently that of identity. Harvey Siegel on the other hand states that the crisis is only in the minds of philosophers and states that Arcilla’s argument that philosophers have neglected educators is not valid as educators are not just the K-12 school personnel. (Arcilla, 2002).
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Barbara Stengel has identified Arcilla’s anxiety with his personal dilemma of identity and indicates that if the role of educational philosophy is to integrate between the two then it is time to undertake the same through action rather than worrying about it. Kathleen Knight Abowitz seeks a solution to the problem in communication by adoption of multifarious approaches by the philosophers of education to include different languages, contexts and concerns of the audiences.
Donald Arnstine belongs to the school with does not find any relevance in interaction between philosophers and educators and believes that each operates at a different level and calls for a review of the policy making process. Frederick Ellett feels that there is interaction between philosophers and educators when it involves a level higher than the K-12 educators while Audrey Thomson feels that the problem lies in the unequal relationship wherein philosophy attempts to be the master of the discourse attempting to explain to education how to do better.
Gary Fenstermacher is of the view that the issue is overplayed and feels that philosophers and educators are talking with one another. He feels that both are important and right in their own context. On the whole these views of various authors provide many paths for consideration and reflection on the philosophy of education.