Fail to plan, plan to fail. Are education policies in England helping teachers to deliver on the promise of democracy?

Edda Sant, James Weinberg, Jonas Thiel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This article examines three questions: (1) (How) Is democracy promoted in secondary schools in England?; (2) How is the promotion of democracy understood in education and teacher education policy?, and (3) To what extent does existing education policy benefit the promotion of democracy in schools in England? To explore these questions, we first discuss the policy landscape surrounding democratic education in England. We then outline our data collection and analysis methods which comprised (a) the coding of ten different policy documents, including curriculum specifications, teaching standards, and inspection frameworks; and (b) the utilisation of an original
survey of more than 3000 teachers working in approximately 50% of all secondary schools in England. Together, our data allow us to raise three important points. First, education and teacher education policy neglects to specify ‘how’ democracy should be promoted and by ‘whom’. Second,
schools are offering scant provision of democratic education. Third, the majority of teachers feel fundamentally underprepared to teach democracy. We conclude this article by arguing that, if policymakers do wish to promote democracy, there is a need for a cohesive policy and teacher education approach that guarantees democratic education for all.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBritish Educational Research Journal
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Mar 2024

Keywords

  • Democratic education
  • citizenship education
  • teacher education
  • education policy
  • secondary education
  • political literacy;

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Fail to plan, plan to fail. Are education policies in England helping teachers to deliver on the promise of democracy?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this