ABSTRACT

This concluding chapter, co-authored by a practising teacher and former National Union of Teachers (NUT) President with a teacher educator, aims to bring the book to a close. Our task is to revisit each chapter to distil the main ideas and critically discuss the way they contribute to the book's project, which is to support practitioners to stand up for teaching as an intellectual activity and participate in educational politics at the micro and macro levels where power struggles are being played out. Our greatest (threefold) concern is that:

Teaching and teacher education in England, now directed by the conservative Cameron-Clegg coalition government, stands out as a leading example of the global neoliberal reform movement but with a radical-conservative national inflection.

Practitioners as professionals are being marginalised and their professional advice ignored, if not criticised, in the quest for profit-making schools and teacher education provision.

Social democracy is being discredited while our professional commitments to ‘equality of opportunity’ and ‘social justice’ are apparently being mocked by Secretary of State for Education Michael Gove. 1

Before proceeding, we should introduce ourselves and the idea and purpose of working in partnership, and how it happened that we came to work together.