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School Inspection and Quality in Swedish Municipal Adult Education
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Education and Adult Learning.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1835-8505
2019 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Quality audits, evaluations and follow-ups in education have become a global phenomenon, and while some argue that it is a consequence of the neo-liberal shift (Ball & Youdell, 2008), others contend that the quality debate existed even before the recent shift (Bergh, 2015). This is not to say that the discussion of what quality in education is and how it should be achieved is irrelevant. On the contrary, the quality issue needs to be scrutinised further since the field is still unchartered when it comes to Swedish municipality adult education (hereby MAE). 

The need for MAE is steadily increasing, on the one hand as a consequence of the intensive immigration flows, and on the other hand as a consequence of a rapidly changing society where many adults need to re-qualify their skills in order to be prepared for the labour market. However, the MAE has over the years been criticised in media, both for its inefficiency to satisfy individuals’ need for more skills, teachers’ eligibility and so on (Lindgren, 2018; Suhonen, 2016) thus raising questions of its overall quality. 

As an implication of the increased need for audits and quality controls in MAE, the Swedish School Inspectorate (hereby SSI), is auditing and inspecting schools, by commission from the state. The agency’s role in the shaping of the quality concept is actualised since they interpret national policy in order to conduct their inspections. Since no previous studies have scrutinised school inspections in adult education, the need for research that explores the still unchartered field is motivated (Segerholm & Hult, 2018). In this specific study, one of the SSI’s audit focusing on quality in MAE will be studied, therefore bringing up the question of how quality practices in MAE unfolds in different settings. Altogether, six different settings of school inspection have been studied. The settings consist of school inspectors’ interviews with school actors. The sample include municipalities that organizes MAE in different ways, ranging from organizing it by them self, to outsourcing it through tendering from private companies.

 I draw on different forms of data in each of the six settings, such as observations of the SSI’s quality audit, interviews with school inspectors and school actors as well as material arrangements in form of text material such as interview guides, quality matrixes, policy documents and so on. This data is analyzed drawing on a socio-material approach, namely practice theory (Schatzki, 2000, 2012) The theoretical framework makes it possible to study the different settings of school inspection as practices where both human agency and material arrangements in form of text materials are included.    

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019.
National Category
Pedagogy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-155029OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-155029DiVA, id: diva2:1294792
Conference
NERA 2019 the 47th Annual Congress of the Nordic Educational Research Association 8-8 March 2019, Nordic Educational Research Association, NERA, 2019
Available from: 2019-03-08 Created: 2019-03-08 Last updated: 2019-03-08

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Mufic, Johanna

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