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Edited by Heidi Biseth and Halla B. Holmarsdottir

There is no single answer to the question: what are human rights? The answer depends on whom you ask. Several of the papers presented at Fourteenth World Congress of Comparative Education held at Bog

The World Bank and Education

Critiques and Alternatives

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Edited by Steven J. Klees, Joel Samoff and Nelly P. Stromquist

For more than three decades, the World Bank has been proposing global policies for education. Presented as research-based, validated by experience, and broadly applicable, these policies are ideologically driven, insensitive to local contexts, and treat education as independent of international dynamics and national and local economies and cultures. Target countries, needing resources and unable to generate comparable research, find it difficult to challenge World Bank recommendations.

The World Bank and Education: Critiques and Alternatives represents a powerful challenge to World Bank proposals. Probing core issues—equity, quality, finance, privatization, teaching and learning, gender, and human rights—highlights the disabilities of neoliberal globalization. The authors demonstrate the ideological nature of the evidence marshaled by the World Bank and the accompanying policy advice.

Addressing key education issues in developing countries, the authors’ analyses provide tools for resisting and rejecting generic policy prescriptions as well as alternative directions to consider.

Robert Arnove, in his preface, says, “ Whether the Bank is responsive to the critiques and alternatives brilliantly offered by the present authors, the book is certain to influence development and education scholars, policymakers, and practitioners around the globe.

Philip W. Jones

The book tells the story of the World Bank’s involvement in education, for which lending began in 1963. The study considers how the nature of the Bank as a financial institution has shaped its view of development and globalisation, and how education relates to these. The book examines the reasons why the Bank is involved in education, its education policy stances, the nature and impact of its projects and lending programs, and the Bank as an agent of globalisation. Bank work in education is hugely controversial. All around the world, in industrial countries, in transition economies, and in the poorest countries, the Bank continues to be under fire for its policy prescriptions and its modes of operation. From both left and right, the Bank is a major target of discontent. In the popular imagination, the impact of globalisation and the Bank’s shaping of such fields as education in accordance with neo-liberal and market prescriptions are prime sources of unease. At the same time, the Bank is frequently misunderstood and misrepresented. This book is based on the author’s unique access to the Bank—its files, staff and working documents—over nearly 20 years. The work is based on access to thousands of classified Bank documents and on a large number of interviews with past and present Bank officials. Therefore, while critical of many features the Bank, the book will be recognised as an authoritative guide to Bank policy formation in education.

Preparation, Practice, and Politics of Teachers

Problems and Prospects in Comparative Perspective

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Edited by Mark Ginsburg

This edited volume, based on papers presented at the World Congress of Comparative Education (Istanbul, 2010), presents research examining pre-service teacher education, in-service teacher development, and the politics of teachers’ work in a variety of geographical regions, including Asia, Africa, Eurasia, Europe, Latin America, and North America. More specifically, the chapters examine the situations, activities, and education of teachers in the societal contexts of Cuba, Equatorial Guinea, France, Germany, Ghana, Hong Kong, Ireland, Lithuania, The Netherlands, Scotland, Spain, Turkey, and the United States. The authors address a variety of important questions related to a group of employees who are key actors in determining the quality of education: How can pre-service teacher education best be organized for different purposes in various settings? What kinds of activities should be organized and who should be involved in in-service professional development to promote teacher capacity and commitment to perform their roles in classrooms and communities? What kinds of incentives can motivate teachers’ engagement with various aspects of their work? How do certain educational policies and reforms promote the professionalization or the deprofessionalization and proletarianization of teaching? What are the opportunities and constraints for teachers as they seek to operate within themicro-politics of schools and the macro-politics of society? The book thus contributes to refining our understanding of the critical theoretical issues in the field of comparative and international education as well as calling attention to dynamics that should be considered in developing and implementing as well as critiquing and resisting educational policies in varying contexts.

PISA Under Examination

Changing Knowledge, Changing Tests, and Changing Schools

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Edited by Miguel A. Pereyra, Hans-Georg Kotthoff and Robert Cowen

From the 23rd to 26th of November 2009 in La Palma island, in the Canaries, the Comparative Education Society in Europe (CESE) organized an international symposium entitled PISA under Examination: Changing Knowledge, Changing Tests, and Changing Schools. During four days seventeen leading scholars of Europe and America presented their contributions to debate the different problematiques of the remarkable phenomenon represented by the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment or PISA.
PISA is not merely an educational event. It is also a media circus which involves the public rehearsal for reasons for failure or success; and even, in some cases, public and political and academic explanations about why 'failure' was not really that, and why’success’ was not really that either. At the centre of all these indications, we find the growing influence of international agencies on education and schooling which is decisively contributing to a marketisation of the field of education, in the context of an increasingly multilevel and fragmented arena for educational governance based on the formulation, the regulation and the transnational coordination and convergence of policies, buttressed at the same time by the diffusion of persuasive discursive practice.
Organized in four sections entitled The Comparative Challenges of the OCDE PISA Programme, PISA and School Knowledge, The Assessment of PISA, School Effectiveness and the Socio-cultural Dimension, PISA and the Immigrant Student Question, and Extreme Visions of PISA: Germany and Finland, the contributions of this book offers a comprehensive approach of all these challenging and significant issues written from different and distinct research and academic traditions.

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Edited by Suzanne Majhanovich and Régis Malet

In our globalized world, the many facets of diversity are ever more in evidence. Issues of race, class, ethnicity, religion, language, gender, sexual orientation and physical disability are manifestations of diversity that have often evoked negative or even violent reactions in society. And yet, any society that deems itself democratic needs to come to terms with diversity in open, informed and accepting ways. Education has an important role to play in developing socially aware, democratic citizens. The ten chapters in this volume contributed by authors from around the world address some of the tensions inherent in a diverse society and provide examples and recommendations for addressing the challenges of diversity in an equitable and democratic way. Three major themes are considered: developing a pedagogy for diversity; issues of gender and race in democratic education; and the transformative role of the arts in democratic education on diversity.
The chapters in the collection present case studies, reports and pedagogical approaches supporting education for diversity. While acknowledging problems posed by local customs, neo-colonialism, and neo-liberalism among others to the development of equitable, accessible and democratic education, the authors provide concrete suggestions for an education that will promote intercultural understanding and democratic citizenship.

Internationalizing Education

Local to Global Connections for the 21st Century

Cameron White

In Internationalizing Education: Local to Global Connections for the 21st Century, the author offers a unique perspective in addressing issues in global, international, and comparative education. Specific case studies addressing such topics as globalization, teacher education, global citizenship, study abroad, and specific regions are included in the text. Additionally, educational themes such as culturally responsive pedagogy, social justice education, critical pedagogy, curriculum and instruction, and constructivism are also addressed.

From Exclusion to Excellence

Building Restorative Relationships to Create Inclusive Schools

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Michal Razer and Victor J. Friedman

Dotted with lively dialogues that illustrate concrete issues, From Exclusion to Excellence: Building Restorative Relationships to Create Inclusive Schools is a practical guide to creating inclusive schools. The authors draw on their 30 years of action-research activities helping educators provide a meaningful education to at-risk/excluded students. They explain how teacher well-being is a precondition for building the sorts of relationships that enable excluded students to learn. They present in detail four concrete skills (non-abandonment, reframing, connecting conversation, and emphatic limit-setting) for reaching children and at the same time strengthening educators’ emotional resilience and professional pride. They address how schools can rethink and reshape the way they relate to parents of excluded children, so as to allow both sides to trust and empower each other. If you are a teacher, this book will help you make sense of the difficulties you face daily and provide you with reliable methods for working more effectively. If you are a principal or policymaker, it will show how the road to excellence begins with inclusion, and with providing teachers the kind of support that enables them to succeed.

Lessons Learned from Novice Teachers

An International Perspective

Kari Smith, Marit Ulvik and Ingrid Helleve

The transition from being a student teacher to taking on the full responsibility as a teacher is experienced as challenging for many novice teachers. In this book, ten newly qualified teachers from five countries, Australia, England, Finland, Israel and Norway, tell their stories as they came through in individual interviews. The narratives, written by the authors, were all approved by the teachers as 'their' stories. What can we learn from listening to the narratives? What can we bring to decision-makers about how to support new teachers? Do new teachers face similar challenges around the world, or do experiences depend on their respective contexts? There are more similarities than differences.

Relevant research literature is used in discussing the cases. Much of the literature on novice teachers focuses on difficulties, and the stories presented in this book confirm that the first year is tough. However, the resilience, motivation and enthusiasm reflected in the stories provide reasons for optimism as regards teachers’ satisfaction with their career choice.

A major reason for deciding to stay in the profession is in the relations they created with the students. Satisfaction or stress related to the curriculum or achievements in their respective teaching subjects was not mentioned. The lessons learned from the ten novice teachers are useful when discussing the teaching profession and, not least, the induction phase of a teaching career.

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Edited by Wiel Veugelers

Education for Democratic Intercultural Citizenship (EDIC) is very relevant in contemporary societies. All citizens, but in particular teachers, curriculum developers, educational policy makers, and educational professionals in civil society (NGOs) have a crucial role in this. Seven European universities are working together in developing a curriculum to prepare their students for this important academic, societal and political task. As part of an Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership they each develop a module in the area of moral, intercultural and citizenship education. All modules are international and inquiry oriented, and make links with society.

In this book the leading scholars write the theoretical background of their module, their curriculum guidelines and goals, the concrete programmes, and the experiences of students. The universities had an annual intensive programme in which students and teachers of all universities came together to have try-outs of parts of the modules. These programmes contributed strongly to the network building of researchers, teachers and students.

The activities have given a strong stimulus to the implementation of Education for Democratic Intercultural Citizenship in the participating universities and in educational organisations worldwide. The experiences show both the necessity and the relevance of this topic and this kind of collaboration.