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ERIC Number: ED459115
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001-Jun
Pages: 6
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
What Happened to the Consensus on Higher Still? CES Briefing.
Raffe, David; Howieson, Cathy; Tinklin, Teresa
The Scottish "exam results crisis" of August 2000 appeared to reveal widespread dissatisfaction with the Higher Still reforms introduced the previous year. For a time the future of the reform seemed to hang in the balance. Yet Higher Still was the product of the consensus which emerged from the "Howie debates" of the early 1990s. It involved a massive consultation exercise with the educational community, and more recent surveys reveal continued support for its broad aims. So how to account for the feelings of resentment and frustration released by the examination results crisis? Many critics blamed the arrogant and unresponsive style of the leadership of the reform. However, a full explanation must take into account the nature of the reform as a flexible unified system, of horizontal as well as vertical lines of conflict within education, and of the political weakness which prevented the leadership from articulating a clear vision. Most countries' post-compulsory education systems are moving toward greater flexibility and unification. The crisis of educational governance in Scotland in 2000 may foreshadow similar crises elsewhere. (Includes an information box.) (BT)
Centre for Educational Sociology, Department of Education and Society, University of Edinburgh, St. John's Land, Holyrood Road, Edinburgh EH8 8AQ Scotland. Tel: +44 0131-651-6238; Fax: +44 0131 651 6239; e-mail:; Web site: For full text:
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Edinburgh Univ. (Scotland). Centre for Educational Sociology.
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (Scotland)