chapter  two
17 Pages

The market economy of education

WithDudley Plunkett

Education is brought to reflect the attitudes of the nation through an impersonal process similar to the way the stock market expresses its hopes and fears. Inevitably, then, schools and any other educational institutions tend to exhibit the strengths and shortcomings of the society that has, historically and politically, given them thenpurpose and their shape. Consequently, education was to be evaluated in terms of how well it served the economy, and how well it prepared its products for the labour market. Responsibility becomes less a personal ethic, and more a social obligation, but to the state and the economy rather than to the community. Growth in the economy and technological innovation become values in themselves. The 1960s-style options-based curriculum, in which any whim might be satisfied, discouraged the kind of thoughtfulness that concerned itself with fundamental values.