Values in design and technology : beyond epistemology and ethnocentrism
conference contributionposted on 08.05.2006, 15:07 by John Siraj-Blatchford
The paper offers a critical review of the guidance currently on offer to those teachers of technology who wish to implement the cross-curriculum provisions related to racial equality recommended by the National Curriculum Council for England and Wales. Issues of 'Equality and Underachievement', 'Values' and 'Appropriate Technology' are considered as well as the curriculum space offered by the proposed revision of the National Curriculum Orders.This paper also provides a critical response to David Layton's(1992b) Design and Curriculum Matters: 2 'Values and Design and Technology' . Layton's paper has been valuable in providing an account of the principal agents that have been involved in the socio-political shaping of school technology. In addition to the 'economic functionalist', 'professional technologist', 'women', 'sustainable developer' and 'liberal educationalist' stakeholders, that are identified, this paper seeks to contribute towards the introduction of a sixth force, one informed by an 'anti-racism' perspective. It will be argued that technology education has a central role to play in deconstructing popular racism and that far from assimilating our pupils into a new subject epistemology defined in terms of 'constraints in working contexts' and 'functional design' an adequate technology education must be one capable of continued reflexive critical evaluation and dedicated to the promotion of equality.
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