(Re)Visioning the Centre

education reform and the 'ideal' citizen of the future

Linda J. Graham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Citations (Scopus)


Discourses of public education reform, like that exemplified within the Queensland Government's future vision document, Queensland State Education-2010 (QSE-2010), position schooling as a panacea to pervasive social instability and a means to achieve a new consensus. However, in unravelling the many conflicting statements that conjoin to form education policy and inform related literature (Ball, 1993), it becomes clear that education reform discourse is polyvalent (Foucault, 1977). Alongside visionary statements that speak of public education as a vehicle for social justice are the (re)visionary or those reflecting neoliberal individualism and a conservative politics. In this paper, it is argued that the latter coagulate to form strategic discursive practices which work to (re)secure dominant relations of power. Further, discussion of the characteristics needed by the 'ideal' future citizen of Queensland reflect efforts to 'tame change through the making of the child' (Popkewitz, 2004, p. 201). The casualties of this (re)vision and the refusal to investigate the pathologies of 'traditional' schooling are the children who, for whatever reason, do not conform to the norm of the desired school child as an 'ideal' citizen-in-the-making and who become relegated to alternative educational settings.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-215
Number of pages19
JournalEducational Philosophy and Theory
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2007



  • neoliberal reform
  • choice
  • governmentality
  • post-school pathways
  • exclusion

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