chapter  2
17 Pages

The Dark Side of the Moon: Imagining an End to Failure in Urban Education

WithMichael Barber

It is a paradox but it’s true. I have chosen to discuss failure in this TES/Greenwich lecture because I believe the education service is increasingly successful. I began to wonder what the policy implications would be of asking the earth-shatteringly simply question: could we have an education service in which there were no more failing schools? I ask this question not only because it is intrinsically important but also because it uncovers questions which hitherto, to use Roland Barthes’ phrase, have been non-discussibles. They are, in my terms, on the dark side of the moon.