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ERIC Number: EJ1086602
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0218-8791
Why Go to School? Student, Parent and Teacher Beliefs about the Purposes of Schooling
Widdowson, Deborah A.; Dixon, Robyn S.; Peterson, Elizabeth R.; Rubie-Davies, Christine M.; Irving, S. Earl
Asia Pacific Journal of Education, v35 n4 p471-484 2015
This qualitative study explored the beliefs of students, parents and teachers on the purposes of schooling in order to provide a context for understanding beliefs and attitudes to school learning and achievement. Focus groups were conducted with Year 9 and 10 students (aged 13-15 years) and parents and teachers in three secondary schools in different socio-economic areas in an urban district. Four categories were identified in relation to beliefs about the purposes of schooling: (1) to learn and gain self-knowledge; (2) to develop life and social skills; (3) to optimize life chances and quality of life; (4) to enable future employment and economic wellbeing. Comparisons revealed that students, parents and teachers all believed in the learning purpose of schooling, but did not all endorse an economic purpose. Students had the broadest views on school purposes. The greatest alignment between views was found for students and parents. The greatest difference between groups was found for students and teachers from high socio-economic area schools. Findings were considered in relation to national curriculum aims and external pressures from globalization. Overall, findings are conducive to a lifelong learning approach, pointing to belief in the intrinsic value of school learning independent of any economic function it may serve.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 9; Junior High Schools; Middle Schools; Secondary Education; High Schools; Grade 10
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New Zealand
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A