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ERIC Number: EJ1088149
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0268-0939
Measuring "Progress": Performativity as Both Driver and Constraint in School Innovation
Solomon, Yvette; Lewin, Cathy
Journal of Education Policy, v31 n2 p226-238 2016
In this paper, we describe one secondary school's radical attempt to rethink the shape and purpose of education for its pupils, and its subsequent return to more traditional methods in the face of pressures of performativity and accountability. Framing our analysis within activity theory and its emphasis on contradiction as a driver for change, we describe the school's move towards a thematic curriculum and "personalised learning" as a process of productive tensions which enabled the development of new approaches to education. While these innovations were considered to be of major benefit to both teachers and pupils, a fundamental contradiction between the focus on individual development underpinning the new approach and the demands of accountability in a persistent culture of performativity proved to be insurmountable. We argue that this particular contradiction highlights the dominance of measurability in judgements of school success and individual progress, with consequences for the pupils' longer term education futures.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A