Since the 1980s
roles, relations and responsibilities of state, market and society have been rearranged through policies of decentralisation, deregulation and private sector involvement. Rhone 2000
The state sets up the conditions in which competition can take place and becomes itself an evaluative state.
Steering at a distance is an alternative to coercion/prescriptive control
Constraints are replaced by incentives
Coercion is replaced by self steering - the appearance of autonomy.
can be defined as the transfer of tasks, power, responsibilities and resources from central government to democratically elected local lower authorities that are largely or totally dependent upon central government.
As it happens it is easier to transfer tasks and responsibilities than power and resources. MOFA 2002
The importance of developing local capacity is key. Teachers, parents, bureaucrats must have the knowledge and skill.
Four main forms of private sector involvement in UK education:
- Contracting out
- individual parts of the service are contracted out but ownership remains public. e.g. CfBT, Nord Anglia
- Public- private partnerships PPP
- Public doesn’t own the asset. Authority makes an annual payment to the private company which provides the building and services (like a mortgage)
- gets a lot of bad press
- New schools/takeovers
- academies. They sit outside the legislative framework for state schools and have freedom to device curriculum and admissions.
- Business involvement
- businesses are encouraged to fund or donate schools (not T&L but sponsorship and donations e.g. equipment)
Concerns regarding private school involvement
- interups democratic accountability between provider and electorate. Citizens are further from being involved in decision making.
- Different ethos of private compared to public sector. Social service versus commercialised. Ability to pay.
- Values drift. People respond to market and promote their market position. Selection by ability becomes more common.
- Leads to a loss of public authority. Moral status disappears.
Growing movement to consumer rights rather than citizen rights which leads to individual schools competing for clients in the marketplace.
Marginalises group and leads to social injustice.