Restructuring teachers' work-lives and knowledge in England and Spain

J. Muller, C. Norrie, F. Hernandez, Ivor Goodson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article explores the restructuring of education in England and Spain. Against a presumably homogeneous global streamlining of educational systems according to competition-driven goals, the comparison of teachers' work-lives and professional knowledge evidences a variety of experiences under-represented in discourses on global restructuring. It is argued that in England political reforms have worked their way deep into the working lives of professionals, giving rise to a 'managerial' model of professionalism, whereas in Spain reforms are more loosely coupled with teachers' work, favouring a 'social service'-oriented model. Nevertheless, despite the different professional ideals, teachers uniformly stressed the challenges they face were predominantly due to broader social transformations for which policy reforms provided few, if any, remedies. The study emphasizes the variety of educational reforms and teachers' experiences in the European context and argues that further educational change should be bound to the historical trajectory and the concrete needs of the professionals in question.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)265-277
Number of pages13
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2009


  • welfare restructuring
  • Spain
  • England
  • teaching profession
  • professional knowledge


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