FORUM
ISSN 0963-8253


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Volume 55 Number 2 2013

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

 

SPECIAL ISSUE
Co-operative Education for a New Age?
Guest Editor: TOM WOODIN

Tom Woodin & Michael Fielding. Editorial. Co-operative Education for a New Age?, pages 179‑184 http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.179 VIEW FULL TEXT OPEN ACCESS

Henry Tam. Cooperative Problem-Solving and Education, pages 185‑201

Ruth Martin. Co-operative Problem-Solving at the Royal Docks Community School, pages 203‑207

Wendy Drewery. Restorative Justice Practice: cooperative problem-solving in New Zealand’s schools, pages 209‑216

Anne Walker. Why Teach Cooperative Problem-Solving in Adult Education?, pages 217‑225

Sarah Jones. Co-operation: the antidote to isolated misery, pages 227‑244

Phil Arnold. Making Co-operative Ideas Work, pages 245‑254

Gail Davidge. Some ‘get it’ more than others: cultivating a co-operative ethos in uncertain times, pages 255‑268

Patrick Roach. Reasons to Co-operate: co-operative solutions for schools, pages 269‑277

Nigel Todd. The Wallsend Owenites, pages 279‑291

Keith Vernon. Co-operative Education and the State, c.1895‑1935, pages 293‑307

Ander Delgado. Co-operatives, Democracy and Education: the Basque ikastolas in the 1960s and 1970s, pages 309‑321

GENERAL ARTICLES
Clyde Chitty. Caroline DeCamp Benn and the Comprehensive Education Movement, pages 323‑325

Jane Martin. Caroline DeCamp Benn and the Comprehensive Education Movement: the biographer’s tale, pages 327‑333

John Bolt, Richard Harris, Keith Lichman, Melian Mansfield, Paul Martin & Imogen Pennell. A Better Future for our Schools, pages 335‑342

Landmark Freedom of Information Victory for British Humanist Association, pages 343‑344 http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.343 VIEW FULL TEXT OPEN ACCESS

BOOK REVIEW
Unleashing Greatness: getting the best from an academised system (Academies Commission), reviewed by Clyde Chitty, pages 345‑348 http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.345 VIEW FULL TEXT


 

Cooperative Problem-Solving and Education

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.185

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Debates in education are often polarised by those who want students to be firmly told what they should take on board, and those who insist individuals learn best if they were liberated from all forms of collective arrangement (such as an education authority). Some politicians even fluctuate between the two sets of views without any underlying rationale. However, there is substantial evidence that people actually increase their understanding most effectively when they learn through cooperative problem-solving. This article sets out what is involved in cooperative problem-solving, why it should be adopted more widely and how it can be extended in practice.

 

Co-operative Problem-Solving at the Royal Docks Community School

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.203

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This article responds to Henry Tam’s article in this issue of FORUM by exploring opportunities for co-operative problem-solving for staff and students of the Royal Docks Community School in the London Borough of Newham. Becoming a co-operative trust helped the school move out of special measures and develop a strategy of participation and improvement based upon co-operative values and principles. Co-operative problem solving at the school has focused upon curriculum, student voice, behaviour and the development of student co-operators.

 

Restorative Justice Practice: cooperative problem-solving in New Zealand’s schools

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.209

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This article links capability for cooperative problem-solving with socially just global development. From the perspective of the United Nations Development Programme, the work of global development, founded on a concept of global justice, is capability-building. Following Kurasawa, the article proposes that this form of global justice is enacted where capability for respectful interaction is built at the level of face-to-face relationships among people in communities; and further, that restorative justice practice has the characteristics required to develop this capability. Using the historical development of restorative practices in New Zealand as an example, it is suggested that restorative practice is a form of cooperative problem-solving which can create citizens for a more just society.

 

Why Teach Cooperative Problem-Solving in Adult Education?

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.217

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This article explores aspects of the theory and practice of cooperative problem solving in education from the perspective of community-based adult learning. It describes how society can benefit from using collaborative and questioning approaches as a positive alternative to more confrontational methods of resolving differences and how collective inquiry is recognised as having sound educational value. Illustrative examples from the Workers’ Educational Association show how cooperative problem solving can make a difference to students and their communities.

 

Co-operation: the antidote to isolated misery

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.227

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This is a case study demonstrating the impact the co-operative movement has had on one co-operative school in south-west England. Lipson Co-operative Academy in Plymouth was one of the first schools to convert to become a co-operative school in 2009. The article has been co-written by members of the Academy and focuses on three transformational aspects of co-operative education: co-operative learning; co-operative professional development; and the Young Co-operative movement. It is set within a frame of democratic schooling recently described by Fielding and Moss and Woods, but draws upon Deming, Cole and Dewey in its original reasoning. In it we establish how it is possible to swim against the tide of neoliberal individualism and competition to grow a successful school built on democratic principles and co-operation. By persevering on this journey we are committed to our mission of developing the conscience of the next generation.

 

Making Co-operative Ideas Work

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.245

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Reddish Vale Technology College was the first co-operative trust in England. The democratic and co-operative nature of the experiment mean that students have gained a greater voice in the organisation of the school. As a result, new social enterprises, environmental interventions, connections with the community and with the wider co-operative movement have all thrived. The importance of taking action in partnership with learners, staff, parents, partners and community all contribute to the development of a more autonomous and democratic form of education. This example is understood within the context of the Schools Co-operative Society.

 

Some ‘get it’ more than others: cultivating a co-operative ethos in uncertain times

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.255

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This article seeks to explore the dilemmas that schools and their members encounter whilst striving to establish a co-operative culture within an educational landscape contoured by decades of neo-liberal policy ‘reform’. In order to (re)consider the construction of democratic subjectivity within contemporary educational discourse, the author has drawn upon ethnographic research recently undertaken in a number of co-operative schools in the North-West of England. Within the article she considers the subjective impacts of co-operative practices in education on the sense of wellbeing and agency of teachers, parents and children, and reflects upon how various identity positions and power relationships are enacted and interpreted within this educational milieu. The article concludes with a critical consideration of the tensions that arise for schools and their members as they endeavour to reconcile the competing diametric demands of co-operation and competition within this nascent terrain of public education.

 

Reasons to Co-operate: co-operative solutions for schools

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.269

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The NASUWT’s landmark agreement with the Schools Co-operative Society has provided a new spur to co-operation, collaboration and collegiality in schools. Against a background of rapid and radical changes to the education landscape, co-operative schools are viewed by many as a means to maintaining public service ethos and values in education. The article explains why the NASUWT entered into the agreement and describes some of the benefits that it is delivering to teachers and to schools.

 

The Wallsend Owenites

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.279

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The nineteenth-century British Co-operative Movement included a commitment to education. Although only a minority of consumer co-operative societies offered educational facilities for their members, there was a willingness to experiment among those Co-operators whose grasp of Co-operation extended ideologically beyond remaining content with operating shops. This pioneering strand found its most advanced expression at Wallsend, on Tyneside, where Co-operators founded the Movement’s only Co-operative elementary school.

 

Co-operative Education and the State, c.1895‑1935

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.293

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The co-operative movement is currently exploring ways of engaging with changes in government education policy to develop schools with a distinctive co-operative ethos. While drawing on the opportunities in changing policy, these initiatives can also be seen as offering alternatives to the prevailing tenor of government thinking. This is not the first time that the co-operative movement has negotiated sometimes difficult relationships with state educational policy. From the late nineteenth century, the co-operative movement was a significant provider of education that utilised, tested and challenged the principles and practices of state provision. This article considers two episodes in this relationship. The first revolves around the expansion of state elementary schooling at the end of the nineteenth century, which allowed the co-operative movement to develop other kinds of education. Co-operators, however, were very critical of the 1902 Education Act, which was seen as undermining an important tradition of accessible higher-level education for working people. In the second case, the 1918 Education Act potentially offered a new forum for co-operative education, which required co-operators to re-assess their relationships with state-provided education.

 

Co-operatives, Democracy and Education: the Basque ikastolas in the 1960s and 1970s

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.309

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This article analyses the process of creation of ikastola schools throughout the Basque Country from the 1960s onwards. These were schools whose major characteristic was to teach the majority of subjects in the Basque language in the adverse context of the final years of Franco’s regime. This article deals with the social and political context in which these educational initiatives arose in the 1960s and 1970s. It describes, first, how these schools were created by a strong social movement and how it worked during that period. Secondly, it pays attention to the internal conflicts of these institutions, derived from the strong political mobilisation of the Basque society in the last years of Franco’s regime and transition to democracy.

 

Caroline DeCamp Benn and the Comprehensive Education Movement

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.323

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This article, which accompanies Jane Martin’s piece in this issue of FORUM (Volume 55 Number 2 2013, pp. 327‑333), is a revised version of a lecture given at the History of education conference held in Winchester, December 1, 2012.

 

Caroline DeCamp Benn and the Comprehensive Education Movement: the biographer’s tale

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.327

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In educational politics, Caroline Benn (1926‑2000) played a leading role in the British comprehensive reform. Wife of one of the most prominent post-war socialists in Britain, the aim is to use Caroline’s long campaign alongside teachers, trade unions, parents, progressive academics and activists as a starting point with which to explore a particular period of egalitarian policy making in the United Kingdom. Examining her networks, her mix of causes, her interests and her thinking, the purpose of this article is to do justice to the diversity and achievements of the Comprehensive Education Movement as a whole. History is a crucial safeguard against the dangers of myth-making. The article uses history and biography systematically as a method of building on the past in order to understand the present and move forward into the future, to further the educational causes she championed but in such a way that we are not trapped in a ‘back to the past’ framework.

 

A Better Future for our Schools

http://doi.org/10.2304/forum.2013.55.2.335

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The purpose of ‘A Better Future for our Schools’ is to contribute to the debate about what a new government after 2015 should seek to achieve. It identifies 10 areas where current policies are clearly inadequate and damaging and identifies a range of actions to address each area. The manifesto is the outcome of debates organised by the Campaign for State Education and the Socialist Educational Association over the last 18 months. The authors are grateful for the contributions that have been made by many people during this process. The proposals are rooted in core values such as democracy, equality and inclusion as well as in the need to maximise the achievement of all our young people. Above all, they are designed to ensure that our schools prepare young people better for life in an increasingly complex and diverse society.

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