18 SES 03, Parallel Paper Session
Parallel Paper Session
The landscape of schooling is changing in the UK, perhaps irretrievably so; especially in the secondary sector (for pupils aged 11-18). One senior academic recently lamented that the Prime Minister (expressing Lib/con government neo liberal policy ideals) was creating a "liquorice allsorts" system of schooling with a bewildering array of different types of schools. Instead, argued Professor Alan Smithers, a senior adviser to the Commons Education Select Committee, “ministers should concentrate on improving standards in all state schools”.
"We've got secondary schools with specialist labels that don't specialise, we've got all kinds of faith schools and we've got three types of academies," he added. "Surely the Government's duty is to try to provide a decent standard of education for every child in the country. This is a 'liquorice allsorts' kind of system whereas all children should have an equal chance of a decent education. I would like more effort put into improving the education of those children whose parents aren't experts on choice."
Others (Ball, 2010) have argued that such changes are indicative of more general and highly significant experimental and evolutionary policy ‘moves’ which involve the ‘reinvention of public sector institutions and a reformation of the overall institutional architecture of the state and its scales of operation’. In Balls’ view the new Academies, for example, are ‘one small part of a more general shift from government to governance (Rhodes, 1997), a shift from the ‘hierarchy of command’ to a new form of ‘polycentric’ and ‘strategic’ governance that is based upon network relations within and across new policy communities designed to generate new governing capacity and enhance legitimacy’. Ball attests these new policy communities bring new kinds of actors into the policy process, validate new policy discourses and enable new forms of policy influence and enactment and in some respects disable or disenfranchise or circumvent some of the established policy actors and agencies.
In this paper I want to speculate on the implications of these new policy initiatives and the restructuring of schooling for the provision of Physical Education in the UK, the entitlements of children to a common (national) high quality, equitable, curriculum and research agendas within the PESP community.
With reference to the author’s sociologically informed work on Physical Education and Health in schools over recent years, the analyses will argue that while research attention to the internal relations of schooling (i.e., how pupils are positioned in ‘relation to’ the discourses, cultures and values of various curriculum and attendant pedagogies) is important and must remain vital to the PESP research project, it is insufficient in current times, given the political changes mentioned above. The paper calls for some refocusing of research attention, so that equal regard is paid to the external relations of schooling, namely, to the political economy of schooling and how ‘new’ forms of organisation, private enterprise and governance featuring in the UK frame (limit, constrain and facilitate) the PE profession’s capacity to provide high quality, equitable Physical education for all.
Ball, S. (2010) Politics, Business and Philanthropy and Heterarchical Governance, Management in Education Vol 23(3): 100–103. Evans, J. (2012) Physical Education as Porn! Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy (in press, 2012)
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
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