chapter  11
12 Pages

Education and life-long learning

The last decade has seen enormous changes in education provision, management and delivery in Britain. The 1988 Education Act, introducing local management into schools, and the detaching of schools from local authority control, had a major impact on public libraries, as has also the rapid expansion of further and higher education in the same period. As Sir Christopher Ball noted in his paper "The learning society", "participation in higher education has risen from 1 in 8 to 1 in 5 between 1979 and 1991 (the target is 1 in 3 by the year 2000)".1 Yet even so, this picture of expansion pales besides figures from other countries. Statistics provided by the National Institute of Economic and Social Research reveal that, in comparison with France, Germany and Japan, Britain fares as shown in Table 11.1 ?