The manufacturing of "crises" in public education-the advance against the public school teacher

Year: 2005

Author: Skourdoumbis, Andrew

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

This paper examines some of the issues involved in claims of “crises” in public education. The intention is to examine recent research from within this field from Australia and to briefly outline the contemporary nature of the crisis in public education argument. It is argued within the paper that whilst debate does indeed occur to some extent suggesting that public education is in crisis, it is a multifarious debate that involves complex issues generally suggestive of the contemporary political and economic context that public education is located within at present. Moreover, this paper poses an argument that alludes to a concealed but nevertheless implied message about a crisis in education from within an education policy sphere aided with and by a methodological research approach whose emphasis forms part of an accepted and dominant field of inquiry, the wider thrust of which is emerging as a debate about teacher and instructional effectiveness. A critical commentary is provided from within a practitioner inquiry basis questioning the foundational arguments of teacher effectiveness studies by firstly considering the nature of educational reform and its impact on teachers and finishing with a possible alternative research approach that may assist teacher practitioners in understanding and recognising the broader though often hidden implications of research inquiry and method.