Whatever happened to TVEI's equal opportunities policy?

Heath, Sue (1996) Whatever happened to TVEI's equal opportunities policy? Journal of Education Policy, 11, (5), 543-560. (doi:10.1080/0268093960110503).


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Original Publication URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0268093960110503


The funding criteria for the Technical and Vocational Education Initiative included a high-profile commitment to equal opportunities for boys and girls. By including such a commitment, the architects of TVEI implicitly assumed that it was possible for TVEI to act as an agent of change with respect to gender divisions within schooling (and, indeed, beyond). This paper firstly considers whether TVEI was actually setting itself a theoretically impossible task given that socialist feminist critiques of education are largely based on the premise that schools overwhelmingly serve as agents for the reproduction of sexual divisions of labour. It then briefly considers the emphasis which the policy developed once TVEI was in operation, and finally questions the origins of the policy, suggesting a number of alternative reasons for its inclusion, in contrast the the somewhat contradictory 'official' justifications. The paper concludes that whilst TVEI undoubtedly had an important catalytic effect in putting gender issues on the educational agenda, it failed to deliver even in its own terms for success, not least because of a failure to engage in the theoretical issues which lay at the heart of the equal opportunities project.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1080/0268093960110503
ISSNs: 0268-0939 (print)
Related URLs:
Keywords: education policy, politics
Subjects: J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe) > JN101 Great Britain
L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Social Sciences > Sociology and Social Policy
ePrint ID: 33874
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
October 1996Published
Date Deposited: 18 Dec 2007
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 12:00
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/33874

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