FORUM
ISSN 0963-8253


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Volume 48 Number 1 2006

Archive

CONTENTS [click on author's name for abstract and full text]

 

SPECIAL ISSUE
New Labour’s Education Policy

Clyde Chitty
. A Bad White Paper and a Bad Education Bill, 3
Melissa Benn. Diversity and Choice: the spin doctor’s route to selection, 9
Jane Coles. Fault Lines in New Labour’s Education Project: points for intervention and resistance, 13
Sheila Dainton. What Works: real research or a cherry picker’s paradise?, 23
John Dunford. ‘The Grand March’ or ‘Beating the Retreat’?, 33
Richard Rieser. Equality or Utilitarianism? Developing Inclusive Education a Contradiction in Terms: the Education and Inspection Bill 2006, 41
Sally Tomlinson. Another Day, Another White Paper, 49
CONFERENCE REPORT. A Good Local School for Every Child: will the Education Bill deliver?, 55
DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.55  VIEW FULL TEXT

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Patrick Yarker. A Week Sketching Fruit: Year 8 students at work with a visual artist, 61
Bethan Marshall. The Future of English, 69
Stuart Button. Drama and Language in the Classroom, 79
Alpesh Maisuria. A Brief History of British ‘Race’ Politics and the Settlement of the Maisuria family, 95
Susan Matthews & Francia Kinchington. Fresh Start: a model for success and sustainable change, 102


 

A Bad White Paper and a Bad Education Bill

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.3

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This article argues that the provisions in the White Paper and the Education and Inspections Bill mean the end of a coherent system of state education, locally administered. The education proposals are clearly part of the Government’s ongoing transformation of the public sector. It is argued that the Government’s education agenda is all about selection, segregation, fragmentation and privatisation.

 

Diversity and Choice: the spin doctor’s route to selection

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.9

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This article, based on a talk given by the author at the Education Conference held at the Institute of Education, University of London, on 25 March, argues that we should be wary about the new centre-ground consensus on education and keep a broader vision in mind for the future of comprehensive education in the United Kingdom.

 

Fault Lines in New Labour’s Education Project: points for intervention and resistance

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.13

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This article argues that New Labour’s third term education policies are riddled with internal contradictions. The author explores key tension points and suggests that fractures might be opened up where the government is most vulnerable to critical scrutiny and interventions by grassroots resistance.

 

What Works: real research or a cherry picker’s paradise?

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.23

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The purpose of this article is to consider the evidence base for some of the proposals in the Education White Paper, Higher Standards: better schools for all. In particular, the article challenges the assertion by the Secretary of State for Education and Skills that the White Paper is based on knowledge of ‘what works’. Using the issue of ‘parent power’ as an example, the main argument of the article is that many of the proposals in the White Paper are based on assertion and either ignore or contradict existing evidence. Drawing on evidence submitted to the House of Commons Education and Skills Committee’s inquiry into the White Paper, the article offers a critique of aspects of the White Paper and argues that in considering how best to raise standards in schools, policy making could be better informed by utilising the knowledge and experience of professional practitioners.

 

‘The Grand March’ or ‘Beating the Retreat’?

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.33

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This article argues that many Conservative and Labour backbenchers have reacted to the Downing Street spin on the 2005 Education White Paper rather than to the White Paper itself. But it is acknowledged that an increase in the variety of secondary schools can lead to division, discrimination and a disturbing emphasis on hierarchy.

 

Equality or Utilitarianism? Developing Inclusive Education a contradiction in terms: the Education and Inspections Bill 2006

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.41

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This article argues that the White Paper’s attack on the role of local authorities will have a detrimental effect on the promotion of inclusive education.

 

Another Day, Another White Paper

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.49

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This article argues that the proposals in the 2005 White Paper can be largely explained by a New Labour emphasis on ‘meritocracy’ merging with a right-wing belief in education as a means of creating an hierarchical society.

 

A Week Sketching Fruit: Year 8 students at work with a visual artist

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.61

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The content of many school lessons is increasingly determined by the requirement to ‘cover’ what is laid down in England’s National Curriculum. In this situation transmission or ‘delivery’ models of teaching all too often become the norm. This article records aspects of a very different kind of teaching and learning, and presents some responses to it from both students and teachers.

 

The Future of English

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.69

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This article reviews some of the documents that have recently been published on the teaching of English, and argues that the 2006 QCA Functional Skills Draft has important implications for the future of an ‘entitlement’ curriculum.

 

Drama and Language in the Classroom

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.79

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This article presents an example of a project designed to get children of different ages working together and working for each other. The project relied quite heavily on children creating a dramatic context and the author shows how the dramatic element has the potential to affect their learning in positive ways. The provision of a shared make-believe common context is at the heart of children’s symbolic play and provides for purposeful learning and specific language opportunities. As well as looking at the project, the article stresses the importance of appreciating the links between symbolic play and drama and the ways in which drama reaches beyond the experience of children’s play.

 

A Brief History of British ‘Race’ Politics and the Settlement of the Maisuria Family

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.95

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This article traces ‘race’ policy and practice in Britain and flags up seminal moments from the 1960s onwards. Although settlement of Asian, Black and other minority ethnic immigrants can be traced back to 1948 with the arrival of the SS Empire Windrush from the Caribbean, it is in the 1960s that ‘race’ became most visible in parliamentary politics. The article tackles each decade individually, highlighting events and laws that have shaped and defined macro policy and also the micro experiences of the Maisuria family. It is argued that it is of huge importance to establish a connection between macro politics and micro struggles in a liberal democracy to see how the policy of the state links with lived lives.

 

Fresh Start: a model for success and sustainable change

DOI: 10.2304/forum.2006.48.1.102

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This article examines the rationale and debate of the ‘Fresh Start’ schools policy introduced by the New Labour Government in 1997 as a vehicle for improvement in schools that historically had been classified as ‘failing’. Underpinning the policy is the assumption that Fresh Start can act as a catalytic agent of positive change to performance, school cultures and the school community. Dr Matthews’ involvement with the case study primary school began when she became a governor four months after the school received its new Fresh Start status in May 2000.

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