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‘Troubling’ vocational education and training in disadvantaged schools

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  • Economics
  • Political Science


This paper is a part of two ongoing and interconnected Australian Research Council (ARC) projects, one investigating student engagement/retention (Smyth & Down, 2005) and the other school-community renewal (Smyth & Angus, 2006), in two Australian regional communities experiencing significant levels of socio-economic disadvantage. In a collection of articles previously published by John Smyth, Lawrence Angus, Peter McInerney and myself in a special edition of Learning Communities (2006) we attempted to map out not only some of the broader economic, political and social forces at work in constructing persistent patterns of socio-economic disadvantage but the ways in which students, teachers and communities were able to successfully reinvent their identities and practices in an increasingly hostile and authoritarian economic and political reality (Giroux, 2004).

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