The state of professional practice and policy in the English further education system: a view from below

Gleeson, Denis and Hughes, Julie and O'Leary, Matt and Smith, Rob (2015) The state of professional practice and policy in the English further education system: a view from below. Research in Post-Compulsory Education, 20 (1). pp. 78-95. ISSN 1359-6748

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Abstract

This paper addresses a recurring theme regarding the UK’s Vocational Education and Training (VET) policy in which Further Education (FE) and training are primarily driven by employer demand. It explores the tensions associated with this process on the everyday working practices of FE practitioners and institutions and its impact on FE’s contribution to the wider processes of social and economic inclusion. At a time when Ofsted and employer-led organisations have cast doubt on the contribution of FE, we explore pedagogies of practice that are often unacknowledged by the current audit demands of officialdom. We argue that such practice provides a more enlightened view of the sector and the challenges it faces in addressing wider issues of social justice, employability and civic regeneration. At the same time, the irony of introducing laissez-faire initiatives designed to remove statutory qualifications for FE teachers ignores the progress made over the past decade in raising the professional profile and status of teachers and trainers in the sector. In addressing such issues, the paper explores the limits and possibilities of constructing professional and vocational knowledge from networks and communities of practice, schools, universities, business, employers and local authorities, in which FE already operates.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1080/13596748.2015.993877
Date: 18 February 2015
Uncontrolled Keywords: vocational education and training (VET), further education (FE), professionalism, teacher identity, educational research
Subjects: X900 Others in Education
Divisions: Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences > Centre for Study of Practice and Culture in Education (C-SPACE) > Re-thinking Practitioner Education and Professional Practice
REF UoA Output Collections > REF2021 UoA23: Education
Depositing User: Matt O Leary
Date Deposited: 02 Mar 2017 16:57
Last Modified: 10 Oct 2020 09:36
URI: http://www.open-access.bcu.ac.uk/id/eprint/3949

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