Key Issues of the UK Education Reform

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2017-61-6-93-102

I. Podkolzina (,
Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences (IMEMO), 23, Profsoyuznaya Str., Moscow, 117997, Russian Federation 

Abstract. This paper examines the main trends in the UK government policy on education. Promotion of social mobility as the principal goal of this policy is subjected to a critical appraisal. However, the approaches to ensuring equal access to high-quality secondary education and providing an increased access to higher education are studied thoroughly. Special consideration is given to the educational reforms in England that have been carried out by the Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition and the Conservative government since 2010. It is argued that these reforms focus on liberalization of schools as well as on democratization and marketization of the university education. These trends are studied in the historical and international context. The article is divided into three sections. Firstly, the significance of educational policy is evaluated in relation to the public resource allocation. The introduction of the quasi-market in secondary education to stimulate school competition and to increase quality of education is discussed in the second section. The dispute between the Labour party and the Tories reduces to advantages and disadvantages of manageable vs competitive systems of education. Problems considered in the third section are a transformation of the universities funding scheme and a shift toward an application of market principles to higher education. The paper concludes with some comments regarding the impact of M. Thatcher’s education policy on the ongoing reforms of the Coalition and Conservative governments. It also points at the effectiveness of the Anglo-Saxon education model. 

Keywords: education reform, education funding, school education, universities, social mobility, student lending, Anglo-Saxon education model 


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For citation:
Podkolzina I. Key Issues of the UK Education Reform. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2017, vol. 61, no. 6, pp. 93-102.

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