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A New Learning and Skills Landscape? The central role of the Learning and Skills Council

Coffield, Frank and Steer, Richard and Hodgson, Ann and Spours, Ken and Edward, Sheila and Finlay, Ian (2005) A New Learning and Skills Landscape? The central role of the Learning and Skills Council. Journal of Education Policy, 20 (5). pp. 631-656. ISSN 0268-0939

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Abstract

This is the first paper from a project which is part of the Economic and Social Research Council’s Programme of research into “Teaching and Learning”. The project, entitled “The Impact of Policy on Learning and Inclusion in the New Learning and Skills Sector”, explores what impact the efforts to create a single learning and skills system (LSS) are having on teaching, learning, assessment and inclusion for three marginalised groups of post-16 learners. Drawing primarily on policy documents and 62 in-depth interviews with national, regional and local policymakers in England, the paper points to a complex, confusing and constantly changing landscape; in particular, it deals with the formation, early years and recent reorganisation of the Learning and Skills Council (LSC), its roles, relations with Government, its rather limited power, its partnerships and likely futures. While the formation of a more unified LSS is broadly seen as a necessary step in overcoming the fragmentation and inequalities of the previous post-16 sector, interviewees also highlighted problems, some of which may not simply abate with the passing of time. Political expectations of change are high, but the LSC and its partners are expected to carry through ‘transformational’ strategies without the necessary ‘tools for the job’. In addition, some features of the LSS policy landscape still remain unreformed or need to be reorganised. The LSC and its partners are at the receiving end of a series of policy drivers (eg planning, funding, targets, inspection and initiatives) that may have partial or even perverse effects on the groups of marginalised learners we are studying.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: a. Policy in post-16 education and training b. Drawing on interviews with policy-makers and key policy actors in the learning and skills sector, and analysis of key policy documents c. Provided an analysis of the ‘new learning and skills landscape’ and the early years of operation of the Learning and Skills Council d. - e. Based upon 3 ½ year TLRP Project Impact of Policy on Learning and Inclusion in the Learning and Skills Sector f. Refereed by two reviewers for the Journal of Education Policy g. 15% contribution This is an electronic version of an article published in Coffield, Frank and Steer, Richard and Hodgson, Ann and Spours, Ken and Edward, Sheila and Finlay, Ian (2005) A New Learning and Skills Landscape? The central role of the Learning and Skills Council. Journal of Educational Policy, 20 (5). pp. 631-656. Journal of Educational Policy is available online at: http://www.informaworld.com/10.1080/02680930500222493
Controlled Keywords: Public policy analysis , Post-compulsory educational institution (not HE)
Divisions: IOE Departments > Departments > Education and International Development
IOE Departments > Departments > Lifelong and Comparative Education
Depositing User: IOE Repository Editor (2)
Date Deposited: 11 Mar 2010 12:23
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2013 11:44
URI: http://eprints.ioe.ac.uk/id/eprint/1500
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