Outline some of the ways in which marketization and selection policies may produce differences in educational achievement (12 marks) Marketization is the policy of introducing market forces of supply and demand into areas run by state, such as education and the National Health Service. The 1988 Education Reform Act began the marketization of education by encouraging competition between school and choice for parents.
Marketization brought in a funding formula – that gives a school the same amount of funds for each pupil, Exam eague tables -the rank each school according to it’s exam performance and make no allowance for the level of ability of its pupils. For example, secondary school are ranked in terms of what percentage of their pupils succeed in gaining five or more GCSE grades A*-C and finally, competition- among schools to attract pupils. These acts of marketization lead to selection policies. Selection in education is the process of choosing and allocating pupils to a particular school, class steam ECT.
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Will Bartlett (1993) argues that marketization leads to popular schools, cream- skimming. This is the selection of higher ability pupils, who gain the best results and cost less to teach. This selection policy may cause differences in educational achievement as the higher ability students would receive better teaching as the better schools would select them as they ‘cost less to teach’. He also argues that marketization leads to popular schools silt-shifting. This is the off-loading of pupils with learning difficulties, who are expensive to teach and get poor results.
This too creates differences in educational achievement as it causes lower ability students to e ‘off-loaded’ to less successful schools who could potentially not be able to meet their needs. The educational triage is a selection process that may cause differences in educational achievement too, created by Gillborn and Youdell. Educational triage is the process whereby schools sort pupils into ‘hopeless cases’, those who will pass anyw???ay, and those with potential to pass’, and then concentrate their efforts on the last of these groups as a way to boost the school’s exam league table position.
Sorting ay be based on stereotypical ideas about pupil’s ability. Schools need to achieve high league table position if they are to attract pupils and funding. This causes difference in educational achievement as the higher ability students are selected, and attracted to the higher league table schools. This also means they are likely to achieve higher in education. Some schools have responded to marketization by creating a traditional’ image to attract middle-class parents and this too has reinforces class divisions.
Studies of rant maintained (6M) schools (now known as foundation schools) and city technology colleges (CTCs) show how this has occurred. Geffrey Walford’s (1991) research on the CTCs found that although they were intended to provide vocational education in partnership with employers and to recruit pupils from all social backgrounds, in practice they have come to be Just another route to elite education. They become attractive to middle-class parents not because Oh hi-tech image, but because they were seen as the next best thing to a traditional school.