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Globalizing education, educating the local: how method made us mad

Stronach, Ian (2009) Globalizing education, educating the local: how method made us mad. Routledge. ISBN 0415431115

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Globalizing Education, Educating the Local, provides a critical account of how contemporary educational knowledge is put together and presented in the global knowledge economy, It redefines the actors in the education process, from child, pupil and learner, to teacher, parent, inspector and policy-maker. The book argues that education is in crisis; that the last 20 years have seen the establishment of an orthodoxy based on the standardisation of all sorts of curricula based on national prescription. It also points out that this orthodoxy is increasingly global. It has been accompanied, and indeed promoted, by the narrow measurement of educational performances of all sorts, their often invalid comparison, and the consequent establishment of a moral economy based on league table positions. Indeed, international league tables are now the motor of national educational change, from the Pacific Rim to former communist territories, and across most western countries. In the UK, there are now league tables for everyone in education from the pre-5s to HE. Yet there is also growing global resistance to this kind of reductionism, and an awareness that such ‘effectiveness and improvement’ discourses can be ultimately damaging and self-defeating. This book confronts that controversy of normative evaluation within education and seeks to enact the ‘turnaround’ that it predicts – a move away from measurement mania and rampant instrumentality. It will appeal to a wide range of readers who are committed to educational change, from system level to individual professional practice, and will have immediate relevance and appeal in the UK, US, Australia and New Zealand in particular.

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