Building new narratives
Academies, aspiration and the educationmarket
in Factories for learning
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This chapter begins by mapping the key questions framing the research and begins to explore the Dreamfields ethos. It examines how the birth and development of the academies programme embeds and extends a vision of marketised education originating in the 1980s. Former Minister of State for Education Lord Adonis described how the schools would build aspirational cultures and act as 'engines of social mobility and social justice' at the 'vanguard of meritocracy'. The chapter provides a contextualised study of the education market in action by showing the implications neoliberal reforms and a result-driven focus have on the shaping of subjectivities. Academies have faced opposition for their lack of democratic accountability as they can set their own labour conditions, deviate from the national curriculum and operate outside local authority control.

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