ERIC Number: ED453584
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1999
Trading in Futures: Why Markets in Education Don't Work.
Lauder, Hugh; Hughes, David
Throughout the English-speaking world, and now Western Europe and parts of East Asia, parental choice and educational markets are being seen by politicians and policy advisors as the panacea to problems of low educational standards and social exclusion. This book tests the key assumptions underlying the faith in markets by linking an analysis of parental choice to flows of students between schools and their impact on school effectiveness. The results of this study suggest that the ability to realize choices is dependent on social-class, gender, and ethnicity, and that this can have a negative impact on some schools' performance. Rather than raising standards, the impact of markets is to polarize them, leading to an impoverished education for many students. Contrary to current orthodoxy, markets are likely to lead to a decline in overall educational standards because they have a negative effect on the performance of working-class schools, while leaving middle-class schools untouched. Education markets trade off the opportunities of less-privileged children to those already privileged. Students from professional and managerial middle-class backgrounds are able to exercise greater choice and are more likely to travel greater distances to enter schools with high socioeconomic status mixes. In these terms, markets do not work because they are neither efficient nor equitable. An appendix contains an extensive and detailed outline of the research program. (Contains 10 pages of references.) (DFR)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Educational Change, Elementary Secondary Education, Equal Education, Foreign Countries, Parent Empowerment, Parent Role, Politics of Education, Public Schools, Racial Segregation, School Choice, School Effectiveness, Social Discrimination, Socioeconomic Influences, Student Recruitment
Open University Press, 325 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Web site: http://www.openup.co.uk.
Publication Type: Books; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: With contributions from Sue Watson, Sietske Waslander, Martin Thrupp, Rob Strathdee, Ibrahim Simiyu, Ann Dupuis, Jim McGlinn, and Jennie Hamlin.