The paper questions whether followership is a valid goal of education and analyzes a goal statement publication of the New York State Department of Education. Although not actually defined in "Goals for Elementary Secondary and Continuing Education in New York State", followership is interpreted as obedience of students (followers) to teachers (leaders) and as a necessary characteristic of an educated person. Maintaining that endorsement of this interpretation of followership is consistent with capitalist oppression of the working class, the author suggests that the overall objective of the goal statement is education based upon class structure. Supporting the allegation that a philosophy of education which espouses followership as its major objective is biased rather than rational, the document identifies the class bias of the New York Board of Regents and discusses the reciprocal nature of leadership and followership skills which would exist in an ideal social relationship situation. Some criteria for valid educational goals are suggested, including an objectively identifiable gain in knowledge or skill and competence in the process of developing values. The conclusion is that followership is not a valid goal of education. (Author/DB)
ERIC Note: Paper presented to the South Atlantic Philosophy of Education Society (Norfolk, Virginia, October 7, 1977); Figures 1-3 may not reproduce clearly due to small type size of original document.