‘Urban children’ meet the ‘buffer zone’
Mapping the inequitable foundations of Dreamfields’ conveyor belt
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Some students fit on Dreamfields' conveyor belt with greater ease from the outset. This chapter begins to unpick the inherent normality and 'innocence' of the middle classes embedded within Dreamfields' institutional perspective. It examines how this preferred normality intersects with race and is compounded by the education marketplace's demand for results. The chapter explores how these parameters shape teacher and student negotiations. Deficit representations of the working class underpin Dreamfields' rhetoric and practice, as the loud, illiterate 'chav mum' with her gaggle of multicoloured, illegitimate children is replaced by the respectable middle-class (mostly white) surrogate parent-teacher. Meanwhile the white working class are represented as an obstacle to what Chris Haylett terms 'multicultural modernisation', with their valueless culture obstructing the realisation of neoliberal modernity. Ethnic-minority children fall into the problematic working-class category. They are folded into the term 'urban children' and tied to pathologised urban space.

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Making race, class and inequalityin the neoliberal academy

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