The New Right introduced the 1988 Education Reform Act and believe in Marketisation and Parentocracy within the framework of a National Curriculum and with teaching and learning monitored by OFSTED.
Underlying principles of the New Right
They believe the state (government) cannot meet people’s needs.
The most efficient way to meet people’s needs is through the free market – through private businesses competing with each other.
Economic growth is an important overall goal – to be achieved by allowing individuals the freedom to compete with each other.
Key ideas of The New Right on Education-
The New Right created an ‘education market’ – Schools were run like businesses – competing with each other for pupils and parents were given the choice over which school they send their children to rather than being limited to the local school in their catchment area. This lead to the establishment of league tables
Schools should teach subjects that prepare pupils for work, Hence education should be aimed at supporting economic growth. Hence: New Vocationalism!
The state was to provide a framework in order to ensure that schools were all teaching the same thing and transmitting the same shared values – hence the National Curriculum
Evaluation of the New Right
Competition between schools benefitted the middle classes and lower classes, ethnic minorities and rural communities ended up having less effective choice – refer to the handout criticising the 1988 Education Act
Vocational Education was also often poor – refer to the HO on Vocational Education
There is a contradiction between wanting schools to be free to compete and imposing a national framework that restricts schools
The National Curriculum has been criticised for being ethnocentric and too restrictive on teachers and schools
The Neoliberal and New Right view of education
You might also like the mind map below – a more up to date summary of neoliberalism and the new right
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