23 SES 09 D, Elite Education: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives within Different European Countries (Part 1)
Symposium: to be continued in 23 SES 10 D
Drawing on the Scottish Independent Schools Project (SISP) research the paper examines elite ‘independent’ schooling in Scotland historically and today. The framing questions are: What has it meant/mean to be an ‘independent’, school in Scotland? Which fractions have been/are the users of such schools? How do the schools’ capitals, following Bourdieu, work in and through private/privileged spatio-temporalities? What are the school effects for societal positions of influence? What are the significant methodological re/orientations from the study? The paper first overviews the differentiated nature of the Scottish private education market historically/today, and then delineates and discusses key published independent sector data. The exceptional case of Edinburgh is examined before the sector outcomes and societal effects are outlined and discussed. Method The paper offers a discourse-based analysis of the SISP observation, interview, focus group, pupil questionnaire data, and researcher reflexive data to show how elite schools in Scotland are differentiatedly constructed and to chart the effects of such schooling. Expected Outcomes The paper concludes by distinguishing the differences between the Scottish elite sector and those of other countries; and outlines a number of topics and areas for future empirical studies and new methodological and theoretical perspectives from the project research.
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