Over half of England's secondary schools are now academies. The social and cultural outcomes prompted by this neoliberal educational model has received less scrutiny. This book draws on original research based at Dreamfields Academy, to show how the accelerated marketization and centralization of education is reproducing raced, classed and gendered inequalities. Urbanderry is a socially and economically mixed borough where poverty and gentrification coexist. The book sketches out the key features of Dreamfields' ethos before reflecting on the historical trajectories that underpin how education, urban space and formations of race, class and gender are discussed in the present. 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. The book examines the complex stories underlying Dreamfields' glossy veneer of success and shows how students, teachers and parents navigate the everyday demands of Dreamfields' results-driven conveyor belt. It also examines how hierarchies are being reformulated. The book interrogates the social and cultural dimensions of this gift that seeks to graft more 'suitable' forms of capital onto its students. The focus is on the conditions underlying this gift's exchange with children, parents and teachers, remaining conscious of how value is generated from the power, perspective and relationships that create the initial conditions of possibility for exchange. Dreamfields acts as a symbolic and material response to the supposed failures of comprehensive education and public anxieties over the loss of nationhood and prestige of empire.
children with the
potential for developing higher skill levels were denied the opportunity to
realise their full potential.
The Labour governments of 1945–51 presided over the implementation of the
1944 Butler Act. They believed it did represent progress towards a more egalitarian society and so were content to see how well it would work. While out
of office between 1951 and 1964, however, the party watched as the system,
in their eyes at least, appeared to fail to achieve its stated aims.
Concerns about the effectiveness of tripartism were in
In 1960–62, a large number of white autochthonous parents in Southall became very concerned that the sudden influx of largely non-Anglophone Indian immigrant children in local schools would hold back their children’s education. It was primarily to placate such fears that ‘dispersal’ (or ‘bussing’) was introduced in areas such as Southall and Bradford, as well as to promote the integration of mostly Asian children. It consisted in sending busloads of immigrant children to predominantly white suburban schools, in an effort to ‘spread the burden’. This form of social engineering went on until the early 1980s. This book, by mobilising local and national archival material as well as interviews with formerly bussed pupils in the 1960s and 1970s, reveals the extent to which dispersal was a flawed policy, mostly because thousands of Asian pupils were faced with racist bullying on the playgrounds of Ealing, Bradford, etc. It also investigates the debate around dispersal and the integration of immigrant children, e.g. by analysing the way some Local Education Authorities (Birmingham, London) refused to introduce bussing. It studies the various forms that dispersal took in the dozen or so LEAs where it operated. Finally, it studies local mobilisations against dispersal by ethnic associations and individuals. It provides an analysis of debates around ‘ghetto schools’, ‘integration’, ‘separation’, ‘segregation’ where quite often the US serves as a cognitive map to make sense of the English situation.
in Government (Basingstoke and
New York: Palgrave, 2001), pp. 1–31.
Suzanne E. Hatty, Masculinities, Violence and Culture. Sage Series on
Violence against Women (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 2000), p. 173.
It was the Labour Party that had been responsible for the introduction
of the Welfare State, including the foundation of the National Health
Service (1945–51), the introduction of Comprehensiveeducation
(1964–70), the State Earnings Related Pension and universal Child
Benefit (1974–79) and the decriminalisation of abortion and homosexuality (1967).
Remaking inequalities in the
Dreamfields Academy acts as a symbolic and material response to the supposed
failures of comprehensiveeducation and public anxieties over the loss of nationhood and prestige of empire. It responds to a perceived crisis of authority in urban
areas where a racialised and classed cultural disorder is leading young people
astray. Culford holds up Dreamfields’ sponsor Andrew Moore and his rags-toriches tale of the working-class boy transformed into self-made millionaire to
show that anyone can become anything if
of equality of opportunity,
and his stress on the strong version, provided powerful ammunition for the
advocates of comprehensiveeducation. It now seemed that a school system that
segregated children from an early age was making a fundamental decision while
the child’s intelligence was still nascent, and did not allow time for ‘the beneﬁcial
inﬂuence of education to compensate for the deﬁciencies of upbringing and early
circumstance’.86 Crosland assumed that regardless of the individual child’s natural
endowment or social circumstances, high-quality and lengthy
The book explores the relationship between violence against women on one hand,
and the rights to health and reproductive health on the other. It argues that
violation of the right to health is a consequence of violence, and that (state)
health policies might be a cause of – or create the conditions for – violence
against women. It significantly contributes to feminist and international human
rights legal scholarship by conceptualising a new ground-breaking idea, violence
against women’s health (VAWH), using the Hippocratic paradigm as the backbone of
the analysis. The two dimensions of violence at the core of the book – the
horizontal, ‘interpersonal’ dimension and the vertical ‘state policies’
dimension – are investigated through around 70 decisions of domestic, regional
and international judicial or quasi-judicial bodies (the anamnesis). The concept
of VAWH, drawn from the anamnesis, enriches the traditional concept of violence
against women with a human rights-based approach to autonomy and a reflection on
the pervasiveness of patterns of discrimination (diagnosis). VAWH as theorised
in the book allows the reconceptualisation of states’ obligations in an
innovative way, by identifying for both dimensions obligations of result, due
diligence obligations, and obligations to progressively take steps (treatment).
The book eventually asks whether it is not international law itself that is the
ultimate cause of VAWH (prognosis).
Labour Party should be kept ‘at a decent distance
from the driver’s seat’.8 Likewise, the Daily Telegraph was content to accept
‘the gifts of Mr Prentice’, including his ‘widely esteemed integrity’, but
felt that he was too wedded to the old collectivist politics through his
continued support for comprehensiveeducation, an incomes policy
and greater funding for overseas aid: ‘In truth he still has much more in
common with Mrs Shirley Williams than either has with Mrs Thatcher.’9
The sceptical reaction of the right-wing press provided the first hints
critics presented as ubiquitous across comprehensiveeducation.
Working-class writing and publishing in the late twentieth century
Let it flow, Joe!
Stepney Words was published in a burst of excitement that is evident in the opening
poem, ‘Let it Flow, Joe!’:
Let it flow, Joe.
Let your feelings speak for you
Let the people know what you know
Tell the people what it’s all about
Shout it out.
The spontaneity and urgency of the writing opened doors for others. Yet the
enthusiasm was blended with feelings of desolation and lack of self
-based education. Demanding changes to, and
expansions in, state schooling, and instigating their own educational
opportunities, many across Britain’s history have attempted to extend
the educational horizons for children and young people.
In one reading it might appear that this history of community control
over children’s education easily fits into the wider history of state
schooling. The slow march towards comprehensiveeducation in Britain
must be understood in light of the myriad public struggles over stateprovided education. The many successive rises in the school