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From policy to practice: a study of power in relation to the implementation of curriculum policy, with particular reference to the use of contract.

Harland, Janet. (1993) From policy to practice: a study of power in relation to the implementation of curriculum policy, with particular reference to the use of contract. PhD thesis, Institute of Education, University of London.

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This thesis explores the powers exercised by government as it attempts to transform educational policy into practice. It originates from an interest in the TVEI programme, administered for the government by the Manpower Services Commission during the 1980s. The engine for this rapid modification of existing practice in both school and college appeared to relate to the device of funding on the basis of contract. This observation led to an attempt to analyze the range of powers available to central government and others. This required both a historical and a comparative analysis, together with a concern for the way in which human behaviour is shaped by specific power relationships. Chapter 1 sets out the origins of the study and establishes a model of the "bases of power". Thereafter, Chapters 2 and 3 consider the extent to which government has held or extended its grip on these different types of power during this century. Chapter 2 deals separately with 1918 to 1939, and 1944 to 1974. After reviewing the model in the light of those accounts, Chapter 3 examines the period from 1974 to the Education Reform Act of 1988. Having established the increasing significance of "remunerative" power based on categorical or contractual funding, Chapter 4 argues that such strategies contain certain key elements : namely, criteria, bid, contract, monitoring, evaluation and replication. Using this analytical tool, Chapters 5, 6 and 7 examine three illustrative cases, starting with the TVEI programme from which the enquiry originated. Chapter 6 examines the impact of a similar funding strategy within the reorganisation of INSET, while Chapter 7 draws on a detailed research study of similar initiatives within higher education. In Chapter 8 an attempt is made to draw together the argument, to relate it to the ever expanding use of contract across the range of social policy and, finally, to consider the implications of this undeniably efficient mode of policy implementation for an avowedly democratic society.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Controlled Keywords: Control of education,State and education,Government educational bodies,TVEI,Inservice teacher education,Educational reform,Higher education,History of education
Subjects: Departments > Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment
Depositing User: Mr Andrew Welshman
Date Deposited: 25 Jul 2014 09:24
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2015 14:16
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