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Education in Britain: 1944 to the Present, 2nd Edition



Education in Britain: 1944 to the Present, 2nd Edition

Ken Jones

ISBN: 978-0-745-66322-7 February 2016 Polity 296 Pages


In the decades after 1944 the four nations of Britain shared a common educational programme. By 2015, this programme had fragmented: the patterns of schooling and higher education in Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and England resembled each other less and less. This new edition of the popular Education in Britain traces and explains this process of divergence, as well as the arguments and conflicts that have accompanied it.

With a reach that extends from the primary school to the university, and from culture to politics and economics, Ken Jones explores the achievements and limits of post-war reform and the egalitarian aspirations of the 1960s and 1970s. He registers the impact of the Thatcherite revolution of the 1980s, and of the New Labour governments which were its inheritors. Turning to the twenty-first century, Jones tracks the educational consequences of devolution and austerity. The result is a book which is more attentive than any other to the ever-increasing diversity of education in Britain.

This comprehensive and accessible overview will have a wide appeal. It will also be an invaluable resource on courses in educational studies, teacher education and sociology.
1 Post-War Settlements
2 The Golden Age?
3 Expansion, Experiment, Conflict
4 The Watershed: Conservatism and Educational Change
5 New Labour: The Inheritors
6 Crisis and Opportunity
- Expanded focus, bringing in further and higher education (especially university education).
- Substantial updates to the chapter on the New Labour governments, bringing these up to the end of the Labour administration of 1997-2010.
- A whole new chapter on the period since the financial crisis of 2008, including austerity measures.
- All chapters revised to bring them up to date with new research, especially new material on Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland.
- Additional features such as summaries of legislation, tabulated comparisons of key policies, etc.
"A fine job has been achieved in expanding the scope of the original book, moving to include not merely developments in the further and higher education sectors - the previous edition mostly centred on secondary schooling - but also those seismic changes fllowing the first term of Tony Blair's landmark administration from 1997- 2001." 
John Howelett, University of Keele, History of Education 

"The second edition of Ken Jones’s book offers an erudite and nuanced analysis of the political economy of education policy in modern Britain. Its balance of insight and detail makes it essential and necessary reading for education policy students and researchers and hopefully for those others who stride boldly and often ill-informed in the “educational space” - policymakers!"
Stephen Ball, Institute of Education, UCL

"Ken Jones’ account of the divergence of the education systems of Britain’s four nations is both analytically sophisticated and deeply engaging. Anyone who wants to understand the current state of education in Britain should read this beautifully crafted and highly nuanced history of the struggles and collisions that have taken us to this place. Whilst much of the story is depressing, the book is a pleasure to read."
Sharon Gewirtz, King’s College London