The contributors to Education Policy: Philosophical Critique believe that education policy still stands in need of analysis and discussion. As a result, twelve philosophers of education subject elements of current and recent UK – or sometimes specifically English – educational policy to critique. Areas under analysis include higher education and faith-based education, assessment, the teaching of reading, vocational and civic education, teacher education, the influence of Europe and the idea of the ‘Big Society’.
The authors also examine the nature of policy itself, in a context where politicians frequently cherry pick educational ideas from other countries, and where the voice of the wider public in policy formation is increasingly marginalised. A recurring theme in the book concerns the tendency to regard education as a private benefit rather than a public good. In a context where the language of ‘the market’ has taken central place in discussion of politics and policies the contributors attempt to widen the debate, and in the process, articulate some richer visions of education than current policies admit. Written in a style that is both forthright and critical, this wide-ranging account of modern education policy offers thought-provoking insights for policy makers and all those interested in how educational policy is made and how it can be critiqued.