Monday, February 10, 2020

Educational Policy Discourse on Choice Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1000 words

Educational Policy Discourse on Choice - Essay Example While the discourse on "choice" was positive for rich people in wealthy communities, it did not create a market standard that boosted the overall quality of education system wide. Good local schools became more competitive to enter, and while the middle and upper class were able to continue to search for good schools out of district, low class families were stuck, unable to provide the money to allow their children to be transported to a better school. This policy of "choice" made good schools more competitive, but it did not have the desired effect on the rest of the schools nationwide. Good schools were supposed to become more accessible to all students thus creating a better education system. While debating the 1988 Reform Bill in the U.K., Norman Nebbit (1987) said "The Bill extends choice and responsibilityToday only the wealthy have choice in education and that must be changed." By creating this policy reformists thought to make the education more equitable. Like free market economics, "choice" education allowed the market to blindly move based on its will rather than following the desire of the state's politicians. Parents choose the best schools, and those schools which are not as popular must be allowed to improve or close. Bureaucracy would not protect the schools from their unpopularity, with the euphemism of 'under-enrolment'; schools would be completely at the will of the parents or the consumer (Chubb & Moe, 1990, pp. 29-30). The good schools would expand to accommodate the needs of the students, in other words, it's a theory of survival of the fittest with the parents responsible for deciding who is the fittest. Unfortunately, there are a few very serious problems with this theory; first and foremost, schools are not a business. Unlike a business that is constantly trying to increase in size to accommodate demand, schools have no such motivator. In fact it has been proven that smaller schools, and smaller class size are considerably more desirable, because they provide more individualized attention for the students (Bickel & Howley, 2000). Popular schools have no reason to expand their school to accommodate the influx in desired attendance provided by "choice" education policy. Instead, they have the ability to become more selective in their acceptance of students (Edwards et al, 1989). Although this was not the intention, it is an outcome that is important to recognize in looking at the effectiveness of the policy. The exit of some students diminishes the chances of others to receive the same quality of education (Murnane, 1990). The second problem with this theory is overflow students. If the popular schools are not willing to accommodate the increased demand, the students have to be schooled elsewhere. This inherently means that schools that are not as popular, and potentially not as good, will have the ability to recruit students and survive even in their inferior status. When demand is high and supply is low, people pay more or they choose not to get exactly what they want. The "choice" system works the same way. Parents are willing either to go further away from home to get accepted into a good school, or they

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