'Showing how critical thinking and local democracy can be a spur to very real educational development within schools that are facing severe challenges, this book provides us with one very valuable contemporary resource of hope.'
Ian Menter, Professor of Teacher Education, University of Oxford, UK
Teachers and Academic Partners in Urban Schools identifies and addresses a major problem for practitioners – teachers, student teachers and teacher educators – working in urban schools burdened by highly restrictive teaching methods and pressures to meet unrealistic benchmarks set by government. In this book, Lori Beckett investigates how to negotiate these tensions and challenges and offers an account of how to elevate practitioners’ professional voice on quality teaching along more democratic lines.
The book addresses key issues for teachers in urban schools, such as:
- fractures in teachers’ professional communities;
- impacts of imposed marketizing policies and forced performative practices on schools;
- the complexities of teaching and teachers’ concerns about practice, as well as teaching practitioners’ perception of educational/schools policy.
Both academic and teacher partners contribute to the work, showcasing the ways they have engaged with each other in joint work and with local government. Through this, the book supports a professional and politicized dialogue about teaching and teacher education, offering a meaningful account of how to fashion a form of educative schooling for students and families with complex needs.
Written by a dynamic and experienced author, this book brings Beckett’s experience to bear on a controversial and complex area – addressing the general trend towards increased regulatory policy in education. It is an essential read for anyone interested in a rich analysis of how practitioners can work to reassert their professional voice and regain control of schools and teacher education, and will also appeal to those interested in the larger project of restoring school democracy.
Table of Contents
Series Editor’s Introduction
Christopher Day and Ann Lieberman
- A ‘choreography of policy conflict’ in urban schools
- ‘Local’ solutions to ‘failing’ schools
- Critical democratic work
- Academic partners & the ‘university project’
- Making common cause
- Teachers’ voice
- Professional control over schooling
Lori Beckett is the Winifred Mercier Professor of Teacher Education at Leeds Beckett University, UK.
"Showing how critical thinking and local democracy can be a spur to very real educational development within schools that are facing severe challenges, this book provides us with one very valuable contemporary resource of hope." Ian Menter, Professor of Teacher Education, University of Oxford, UK
" In 'Teachers and Academic Partners in Urban Schools', Lori Beckett does what many insiders feel unable to do and, in raising her ‘head above the parapet’, acts as a powerful antidote to the current anti-intellectual and unhealthy obsessions with crude accountability measures and short term fixes pervading schooling in England in the twenty-first century [...] Although firmly grounded in a particular English context, this book does have considerable resonance around the world, as countries, especially Anglophone ones, are tempted to policy borrow from England." - Jane McNicholl, Journal of Education for Teaching
"The book is a clarion call for a radically different understanding of educational reform. Beckett delivers a forensic anaylsis of the local ramifications of performativity regimes in high poverty schools across 10 years, in the particular context of school-university partnerships in one northern English city." - Susanne Gannon, Discourses: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, 2016