The Changing Role of Schools in Asian Societies: Schools for the Knowledge Society

1st Edition

Kerry J. Kennedy, John Chi-Kin Lee

Published March 31, 2010
Reference - 240 Pages
ISBN 9780415586887 - CAT# Y109625

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Walk into a classroom in Tokyo, New York, London or Rotterdam, and the similarities in structure, activity, purpose and style will outweigh differences in language, dress and ethnic characteristics. Learning is regulated and rationed, teaching is a process or one-way transmission of knowledge, students need to be docile and conformist, assessment needs to sift and sort the bright from the not-so-bright, and rewards will be given to those who successfully negotiate this regime. But are these the kinds of places that can meet the needs of the ‘net generation’?

The Changing Role of Schools in Asian Societies is concerned with the debate about the nature of modern schooling in Asia. Traditionally schools are historical constructions reflecting the social, economic and political needs of the societies that invest in them. As Asia faces the challenges posed by the ‘knowledge economy’, its schools have taken on a new and quite different importance. This informative book outlines the broad policy contexts in which these transformations are taking place and the practical strategies that are needed to meet this objective.

The authors argue that the future of Asian societies depends on a transformation that requires a fundamental restructuring of schools as we know them while maintaining their long-held cultural values. This valuable insight:

  • provides an overview of educational issues in Asian societies
  • establishes a broad theoretical framework in which these issues can be understood
  • contextualizes issues by providing country case studies
  • acknowledges the important role of culture influencing educational priorities.

It should be of interest to all those working in education policy and comparative education.


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