Education and indigenous communities

This was a very good session with examples from four countries. All of them showed the problems of educational policy that ignores the views of educators and the educated, The most positive example was from Rebecca Linares -who talked about education in Peru and a move to more teaching through indigenous languages – particularly Quechua.

Angela Masters – seeing beyond the scores
Used critical theory and post-colonial theories to look at how policy change affected teachers. This was quite uncanny to listen to as the issues i n the USA seemed to be the same as the UK. Their 2002 policy of No school left behind was felt to have failed. With the following government initiatives educators seem to be left out of the process.

The teachers described curriculum change where there was an increase in Maths resulting in no time for languages. Comparisons are being made between the standards of education in the USA and other countries. Also the introduction of SMART goals, more paperwork, less trust of teachers, long-term planning required up-front and the feeling from teachers that they were under surveillance.

She suggested that accountability reform could be seen as colonisation. I have to agree – her argument was very compelling.

Ritu Radhakrishnan – Voice and agency in learning
Again talking about the increased emphasis on literacy and numeracy. Researched the impact of an arts-infused curriculum.
Reference to critical theory perspective outlined by Willis (2007) Foundations of Qualitative Research: Interpretive and Critical Approaches. Sage.


About Mike Martin

Teacher educator based at Liverpol John Moores University in the UK. Researching subject knowledge of pre-service teachers.
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