The Wolf Report – Perspectives from Europe

This seminar examined the policy proposals of the Wolf Report.

Abstract: The Wolf Report puts forward both strong criticism of and radical proposals for VET in England. Alison Wolf’s analysis of staying-on becoming the norm and the proposal that there should be a heavier emphasis on WRL and WBL at 16-18 rather than 14-16 prompts us to think how our educational system might best adapt to this approach. To make her case, Wolf borrows from a variety of countries. Are there any further insights we can gain from looking more closely at European experience? We can do this in two ways. First, we can look at the thrust of EU policy – in many ways the ‘collective wisdom’ of Member State policy and practice – to see what sorts of policies are being driven forward, their rationale and intended effects. Second, we can look at some of the experiences of individual countries to see what lessons they might have and whether they would point to a re-tuned or radically different set of conclusions to those Wolf proposes.

Dr Andrew McCoshan is an Associate Fellow at the University of Warwick, Centre for Education and Industry. Most recently, he has been lead author of studies for the European Commission on VET pathways, the role of VET in tackling social disadvantage, and on entrepreneurship education, and is currently working on studies of learning outcomes in VET curricula for Cedefop (The European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training) and a comparative analysis of the experience of VET students in seven EU Member States.
Dr Andrew McCoshan’s presentation