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Policy Futures in Education






Sage Publications Ltd.

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Teacher education is under assault from the corporatization of public education. There is evidence that reductive, essentialized/ing discourses of standardization and compliance exert intense pressures on teacher education, and a market-based, audit culture constricts conceptions of the “good teacher”. Despite the pervasiveness of neoliberal discourses, little is known about how student teachers experience increased corporatization in education, or about how they act rather than are acted upon in this context. In examining these dynamics, we explore the following research questions: (a) How do student teachers make sense of neoliberal discourses in teaching? (b) How do student teachers experience the process of what Hammerness describes as “teacher visioning” in the context of neoliberal discourses? (c) What, if any, effect does visioning have on their responses to these discourses? We draw on qualitative data including focus groups, interviews, and document analysis from a group of early childhood student teachers enrolled in a public teacher education program and placed in field sites around eastern Massachusetts. Based on our findings, we argue that teacher visioning can, under certain circumstances, serve as an impetus for student teacher resistance to neoliberal pressures.



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