Education and the Middle Class

Overview

It is often assumed that for middle class and academically able children, schooling is a straightforward process that leads to academic success, higher education and entry into middle class occupations. However this fascinating book shows these relationships to be complex and often uncertain.

Based on the biographies of 350 young men and women who might have been considered 'destined for success' at the start of their secondary schooling, the...
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Overview

It is often assumed that for middle class and academically able children, schooling is a straightforward process that leads to academic success, higher education and entry into middle class occupations. However this fascinating book shows these relationships to be complex and often uncertain.

Based on the biographies of 350 young men and women who might have been considered 'destined for success' at the start of their secondary schooling, the book maps out the educational pathways they took. It analyses their subsequent achievements and entry into employment and compares them with their parents, with one another, and with their generation. Identifying patterns in the data, it also explores examples of extraordinary success and failure, and various forms of interrupted and disrupted careers.

As well as documenting a compelling human story, the findings have important implications for current policy debates about academic selection, access to elite universities, and the limits of meritocracy.

Sally Power is Head of the School of Educational Foundations and Policy Studies at the Institute of Education, University of London. Geoff Whitty is the Director of the Institute of Education, University of London. Tony Edwards is Emeritus Professor of Education, University of Newcastle upon Tyne. Valerie Wigfall is a Research Officer in the Thomas Coram Research Unit, Institute of Education, University of London.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780335205554
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Companies, The
  • Publication date: 3/15/2003
  • Pages: 190
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Sally Power is Head of the School of Educational Foundations and Policy Studies at the Institute of Education, University of London. Geoff Whitty is the Director of the Institute of Education, University of London. Tony Edwards is Emeritus Professor of Education, University of Newcastle upon Tyne. Valerie Wigfall is a Research Officer in the Thomas Coram Research Unit, Institute of Education, University of London.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
1 Destined for success? Political arithmetic and personal narratives 1
2 Schooling the middle class 6
3 Choosing the 'right' school 19
4 Success realized? Achievements at school 42
5 Fitting in and getting on 51
6 Schoolgirls, schoolboys and school work 64
7 Middle-class students and university: 'fish in water'? 81
8 Failing against the odds? 102
9 Entering middle-class employment 116
10 The present and the future 130
11 Including the middle class 150
App. A: Gazetteer of schools mentioned in the text (by pseudonym) 158
App. B: Outline of class categories 161
References 162
Index 172
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