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Education Policy 'At Risk'


te Riele, K, Education Policy 'At Risk', Controversies in Education, Springer, H Proctor, P Brownlee, and P Freebody (ed), Switzerland, pp. 149-156. ISBN 978-3-319-08758-0 (2015) [Research Book Chapter]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2015 Springer International Publishing Switzerland

DOI: doi:10.1007/978-3-319-08759-7_13


Governments worldwide consider the need to increase school retention and educational attainment to be so self-evident that both this need and its rationale have become a hegemonic discourse that is taken for granted. In their chapter Susan Groundwater-Smith and Nicole Mockler have raised key questions that challenge this discourse, contrasting the evidence for the economic versus social returns from schooling. These are valid and crucial arguments, which I will add to in this response. In relation to the first controversy - that global policies regarding school retention fail disengaged young people at the local level - by providing an historical analysis of school retention policy in Australia. This highlights the way economic purposes have pushed equity concerns aside over time. In relation to the second controversy - that for some young, disengaged and marginalised students schools are not the solution but may be the problem - by exploring non-linear pathways and alternative education. My argument is that rather than young people being ‘at risk’, education policy itself is ‘at risk’: of not enabling its own goals to be met, and of letting down the young Australians it should be supporting.

Item Details

Item Type:Research Book Chapter
Keywords:education policy, at risk students, equity, access
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Education policy, sociology and philosophy
Research Field:Education policy
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Schools and learning environments
Objective Field:Equity and access to education
UTAS Author:te Riele, K (Professor Kitty te Riele)
ID Code:113992
Year Published:2015
Deposited By:Peter Underwood Centre for Educational Attainment
Deposited On:2017-02-01
Last Modified:2017-04-04

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