Powerful Skills and General Intellect
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The paper is attached here.
This paper examines the ‘renationalisation’ of English Further Education Colleges promised in a repeatedly delayed White Paper, but it identifies this as their technicisation. From corporations competing in a market for students and trainees, colleges are to be repurposed to provide skills for a Greened economy, with ‘vocational’ courses offering hope to school leavers, particularly in a ‘levelling-up’ North. Following examination of the implications of this renationalisation, for both Further and Higher Education, this paper proposes outlines of a non-academic approach to ‘skills’ learning, drawing upon Michael Polanyi’s recognition of Tacit Knowledge, or what Mike Cooley called The Tacit Penumbra.
Patrick Ainley was Professor of Training and Education at Greenwich University, previously teaching in schools, FE and HE. Within Changing divisions of knowledge and labour (subtitle to Class and Skill, Cassell 19 93), his publications map Learning Policy(Macmillan 1999), From School to YTS (Open University Press 1988) to Training for the Future – still the only history of the Manpower Services Commission (with Mark Corney, Cassell 1990) and Degrees of Difference comparing polytechnics with universities (Lawrence and Wishart 1994), plus further education (The Business of Learning with Bill Bailey, Cassell 1997) for a Lost Generation (with Martin Allen, Continuum 2010); all summarised in ‘Downhill all the Way’, Education in England from Welfare to Corporate State in Alpesh Maisuria (ed.) forthcoming ‘Encyclopedia of Marxist and Critical Education’. Patrick is a member of the Editorial Board of Post-16 Educator.
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