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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.13/28129
- Educational options: democracy, diversity and equity
Walker, J. C.;
Crump, S. J.
- In Australian educational policy debate, advocacy of choice and diversity has come to be linked to support for educational markets and therefore with educational reform and restructuring associated with "economic rationalism." This paper argues that choice and diversity are better conceived within a framework of democratic educational philosophy and policy, and shows that in Australian educational policy development this was the case until the arrival of economic rationalism. The history and outcomes of choice in New South Wales are described. The paper argues that critics of "choice" in the economic-rationalist market context are mistaken to oppose choice as such. Rather, the focus should be on the relationship of choice to basic educational values, such as participation, experimentation, and quality of provision. For these values to be realized in a mutually enhancing way, education systems need to promote sets of real options for students and their families. "Choice" is a secondary concept that emerges within this ethical, political, and professional context. "Markets" are only one putative method for achieving educational participation, diversity, and equality, and should not be conflated with advocacy of quality and equity, diversity and choice. It is suggested that the design of educational systems requires a coherent position on educative learning and on diversity and equity, as well as providing new professional purposes for teachers and collaborative decision-making structures for students and parents.
- Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association. (San Francisco 18-22 April, 1995)
- American Educational Research Association (AERA)
- Resource Type
- conference paper
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