Monthly Archives: January 2013

GCSE Reform

My student has written this piece about GCSE reform. it is thought provoking and worth a read.

GCSE Reform.


All that is Solid for Glenn Rikowski


By Au Loong-Yu with contributions from Bai Ruixue, Pierre Rousset and Bruno Jetin

Published by Merlin Press in association with Resistance Books and the IIRE.
RRP: £15.95, 326 pages,  ISBN. 978-0-85036-637-2
This book is a collection of essays which look at the inherent contradiction in the rise of China from a class perspective. It argues that China is a bureaucratic capitalist state which is a special kind of state capitalism. Only with bureaucratic capitalism does the merging of the bureaucracy and the state reach a point where the bureaucracy privatizes the state in its entirety and makes the latter a vehicle for underpinning the accumulation of bureaucratic capital.

Combining the coercive power of the state and the power of money, the bureaucracy enjoys all the advantages of state capitalism in promoting both neck-breaking industrialization and taking anti-cyclical measures in the midst of the…

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Argument Clinic – YouTube

Argument Clinic – YouTube.

A Theory of Vocational Pedagogy

Professor Bill Lucas has produced a set of slides explaining the theory of vocational pedagogy. See them here:

Musings on professionalism

I am reading about professionalism, particularly with regard to the changes ahead of us in Teacher Education. I found this paper from Jill Jameson. Here are her reflections and questions at the end.

“I argue that, within a generally low trust, highly pressurised wider environment of rapid policy changes in a recession, it is important that professionals maintain their agency and autonomy within communities of practice, external as necessary, and that leaders in the sector learn to build high trust environments locally using distributed or shared leadership models (Jameson, 2011a-d).
Yet it seems that these lessons may not yet have been learned sufficiently to enable a fully functioning sense of professionalism to operate within the learning and skills sector. Is this the case? If so, what can we do to facilitate higher trust environments and a more successful development of professionalism within the sector?

The full text and the references are here:…

There are some fora within my workplace for the development of communities of practice, and these are to be welcomed. Space exists to discuss teaching and learning face to face, and via Yammer, but take-up from teachers is limited so far. More importantly I have yet to see the sort of leadership that Jill advocates. Perhaps there is a correlation?

Jill Jameson on professionalism

Jill Jamesons paper on professionalism from The 12th LSRN National Research Event.

Yvonne Hillier on professionalism

These slides were presented at the 12th LSRN National Research Event in November 2012. More slides and materials can be found here:

The Learning Age

The past, writes poet Michael Donaghy, ‘falls open anywhere’, and it’s important that, when it does, we recognise and understand it. History is important not only to our sense of who we are but also to our capacity to engage actively and intelligently as citizens in democratic society. History and political literacy are intimately linked, which is why we ought to treat sceptically any politician’s attempt to reframe the way history is taught.

The ‘great men’ model which, until relatively recently, dominated the way in which history was taught in UK schools – and which education secretary Michael Gove is, by all accounts, keen to revive – failed most of us because it did not give us an adequate understanding the forces and events that have shaped the communities in which most of us live. When I left school aged 16, I knew a lot about the Second World War…

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BERA ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2012: Teacher Development in Lifelong Learning, FE and HE

BERA ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2012: Teacher Development in Lifelong Learning, FE and HE.

Here is my paper for the BERA conference in 2012. I’ve just submitted a paper for 2013 so wish me luck!