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Every claim about an educational issue is partly a claim about the concept of education. The claim that there are certain “best practices” in teaching, for instance, implies that certain practices are educationally important, which implies a certain conception of what it is to be well educated. To advocate teaching a particular subject logically implies some connection between study of the subject and educational gain, and to say that a certain type of classroom management is desirable because, for example, it is conducive to developing democratic habits and values is indicative of a certain educational ideal.

It follows that everyone who engages in debate about education has to a degree a concept of education, though some are more able to articulate their conception than others, some ...

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