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Discussion Questions

  1. Initial assessment/review: Who wrote this document? When? What kind of document is it? For what audience(s) was it intended?
  2. In the Skipwith case the parents assert that their children's schools offer "inferior educational opportunities." Review the two reasons they give. What do you think of these reasons?
  3. According to Justice Polier (and Justice Cardozo) what is the difference between how teachers act and how directors of business act? Why is this significant in this case?
  4. Justice Polier makes a comparison between teachers and patrolmen. Do you agree or disagree with her reasoning? Why?
  5. The Skipwith case was brought before the court as a child welfare case because the parents were not sending their children to school. According to Justice Polier, these children were not being endangered by their parents' action. What is her argument supporting their actions? Do you agree or disagree with her argument? Why?
  6. What, if any, connections do you see between the schooling circumstances described in this case and circumstances within your own community?
  7. Who do you think should be held accountable for students' education in a community? (Refer back to the document for examples and think about your own community: students, parents, teachers, principals, Board of Education, local government, state government, federal government, officials in charge of housing and district lines, courts, community activists, etc.)

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Discussion Questions." (Viewed on January 23, 2018) <>.


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