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ERIC Number: EJ952944
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 21
ISSN: ISSN-0159-6306
Diluting Education? An Ethnographic Study of Change in an Australian Ministry of Education
Robinson, Sarah
Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, v32 n5 p797-807 2011
This ethnographic study captures the processes that led to change in an Australian public education system. The changes were driven by strong neo-liberal discourses which resulted in a shift from a shared understanding about leading educational change in schools by knowledge transfer to managing educational change as a process, in other words, allowing the schools to decide how to change. Inside an Australian state education bureaucracy at a time when the organisation was restructured and services decentralised, this study helps show some of the disturbing trends resulting from the further entrenchment of neo-liberal strategies. Although control was re-centralised by legitimising performance mechanisms, in the form of national testing, there are indications that the focus on national tests may have alarming consequences for the content and context of education. I argue that the complexities of learning and fundamental pedagogies are being lost in preference for an over-reliance on data systems that are based on a shallow and narrow set of standardised measures.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia