Top of the class: educational priorities for a progressive government

Thursday 22nd February 2024

Tony Breslin announces the launch of a new series of election year blog posts from Transform Education, Breslin Public Policy and our partner organisations

This Spring, under the title Top of The Class, we’re launching a new series of election year blog posts, setting out a range of educational priorities for a progressive government and suggesting how, in terms of policy and practice, these might be addressed.

The series of blogs on this site, initiated by Transform Education and Breslin Public Policy Director, Tony Breslin, will aim to address education across the phases: from pre-school to university, across apprenticeship and professional development programmes, and in the spheres of adult and community education, further education and lifelong learning. They will appear on our Transform Education website and the Breslin Public Policy website.

We’re also sharing the Top of the Class concept with other organisations, including the Fabian Society Education Policy Group, encouraging others to set out their own “educational priorities for a progressive government”. We will republish a selection of those posts here and we may also invite guest bloggers to set out priorities close to their heart on this site.

In short, we’re seeking to both spark and host a debate about the future of education, especially in a context framed by the recent experience of lockdown, an enduring cost of living crisis, the potential offered by emergent technologies and pedagogies, including AI, and the possibilities offered for such debate in what is likely to be an election year.

The intention is to open up a discussion, rather than to establish a ‘party-line’, so expect these posts to be eclectic in their range. What unites them is a progressive ethos and a shared concern about the nature of teaching and learning as we approach the middle decades of the twenty-first century. What kind of change do we want and need to see in our schools, colleges and universities, in childcare and adult education settings, in pupil referral units, alternative provision and special education, and in training and development programmes, and how can professionals, learners and other stakeholders, such as parents and employers, in these settings own these changes and help to shape them?

To this end, please give us your feedback on the pieces that are posted and contact us if you’d like to join the debate by offering a post yourself. In particular, we’re keen to capture the voices of professionals, practitioners and service users – those so often ignored in policy debates.

And if you are based in an organisation that is interested in launching its own Top of the Class strand, do get in touch. We’ll be happy to support you in doing so by making suggestions about format and pitch and by publicising your efforts through every channel that is open to us.

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Lessons From Lockdown
Lessons From Lockdown demonstrates how the pandemic has shone a light on the injustices, inequities and poor political leadership that are endemic in our education system
Nick Johnson
Chief Executive, British Educational Research Association