Continuing Americanisation of UK Education

With the narrow victory for the Coalition of One over tuition fees and the rise of Teach First, it seems that the UK is moving ever closer to becoming the newest addition to the United States of America.

The Special Relationship

Teach First is modelled on Teach For America and tuition fees are commonplace in the USA where they can reach over $30K per year. But that’s not all. In the US the poorer (or smarter?) kids go to local community colleges where it is much cheaper (£3000 a year) and live at home. This is also increasingly the trend in the UK. Another trend in the UK is the creation of academies and free schools just like charter schools in the US. The Tories wish to create more private universities. And No Child Left Behind (2001) provided the model for standards-based education reform in the UK.

This Americanisation is no surprise. Wikileaks has revealed just how much Tories have been looking to cement the special relationship. This poodling was also Thatcher’s policy. And just like Thatcher, Tory Boy and Chums have savagely cut education funding, and they’re well-known Europhobes.

NuLab were no different, however. They looked westward to cowboy Bush for inspiration too.

There are a few things that remain different, however. As British comedian Russell Brand quipped to the bemusement of the audience at the 2009 MTV awards: “Instead of truck, we say lorry, instead of elevator we say lift, and instead of letting people die in the street we have free healthcare.”

It is just unfortunate that a previous pillar of UK society – its free university education system – wasn’t on Brand’s list.

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