Education: New Labour's top priority

Lupton Ruth, Heath Natalie and Salter Emma

in Towards a more equal society?

Published by Policy Press

Published in print February 2009 | ISBN: 9781847422026
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447304036 | DOI:
Education: New Labour's top priority

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  • Social Stratification, Inequality, and Mobility


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This chapter examines the success of education policy – Labour's top priority in every manifesto – in reducing inequalities in educational attainment in compulsory and post-compulsory education. It looks at what happened to educational inequality during this period of investment, growth, and reform. The chapter adopts a conventional approach used in education research, looking at the differences in attainment between different social groups rather than simply at the overall distribution of attainment, thus reflecting historic welfarist aspirations for universal state education as an equalising force in society. It focuses primarily on social-class inequalities in England.

Keywords: New Labour; education policy; post-compulsory education; educational inequality; education research; social-class inequalities; England

Chapter.  7694 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social Stratification, Inequality, and Mobility

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