The Schools White Paper (2022) and ‘regimes of truth’

FORUM - ISSN 0963-8253
Volume 64 Number 3 (2022)

The Schools White Paper (2022) and ‘regimes of truth’
Hilary Povey, James Whiting pages 11-20
DOI: 10.3898/forum.2022.64.3.02


In this polemical piece, we begin by arguing that the Schools White Paper (2022) is framed within, and seeks to promulgate, a right-wing ‘regime of truth’. We interrogate the vocabulary of the Paper to reveal and challenge its ‘truths’ – about the curriculum and its ‘delivery’; the testing and examination regime; behaviour; and initial teacher education and the associated pedagogy. We then argue that the requirement for all schools to join ‘strong’ multi-academy trusts (MATs) is an intimate part of this agenda, not an optional add-on: the Department for Education employs MAT CEOs in every part of the system; MATs operate autocratically; and there is no local democratic control and no local accountability to communities, parents or children. All this reinforces and leaves unquestioned the centralised governmental control of schooling. We end with a call to fight to establish an alternative ‘regime of truth’ based on respect, reciprocity and democracy.

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To cite this article
Hilary Povey, James Whiting (2022) The Schools White Paper (2022) and ‘regimes of truth’, FORUM, 64(3), 11-20.

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