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Languages of Evaluation

Network Proposal: Languages of Evaluation, Actions of Re-cognition

This is an introduction to a research proposal focussing on, yes, evaluation

characteristics 2 of Evaluation process

This will be an online presentation and introduction by Peter Moss, Robin Duckett and Louise Lowings. Peter Moss will  discuss the situation as he sees it, and has introduced at conferences in Canada and the United States; Robin Duckett will introduce the project proposal; Louise Lowings will introduce work which her Nursery School has begun in this respect.

Education is in an era of intense external scrutiny, a scrutiny typically motivated and seen from eyes with interests other than that of education – ‘global competitiveness’, party-political positioning, social engineering, etc – and it is done almost exclusively using testing and scoring indexes from these positions. The contests between ‘policy’ and education’ are particularly intense at the moment, but it is an ongoing dissonance. The situation is likely to continue so long as ‘education policy’ is driven by those with these other interests. Chris Merrick’s article on the Bold Beginnings controversy, and Peter Moss’ position piece which she references, are strong representations of the issue. There are many other voices being raised in contest. An enormous amount of energy and intelligence is being devoted to promote and defend basic understandings and principles of education.

Promote, Defend, Illustrate, Evolve

Whilst actively participating in promotion and defence, it is urgent to develop our own evaluative practice. We need to understand, illustrate, evolve. And it is not satisfactory to use languages and tools of evaluation produced by mindsets and interests coming out of the realms of economic interest. At the very least, these external ‘measuring initiatives’  do not contribute anything useful to enriching pedagogy or children’s experiences; at their worst, we find education reduced to ‘teaching to the test.’

We therefore intend to begin research and development of an evaluative process which, first and foremost, will help us in our own understandings of our practice in relation to our stated principles. Secondly, this process will enhance our capacity to articulate our pedagogy and its effectiveness to the inevitable other eyes and ears. 

Sightlines  Initiative Directors   l   Sightlines Initiative Network Member settings   l   academics

We plan that the ongoing initiative will have various contributors, although all active subscribers are invited to attend this online seminar. Sightlines will provide oversight, and we hope that Professor Gunilla Dahlberg of Stockholm University (and a founder of Reggio Institutet Sweden) will join SI Member Peter Moss (Emeritus Professor of Education, IoE) in contributing from an academic perspective. We anticipate that some participation will be via regional Network steering groups.

We will invite and establish participation of settings and we will engage on a research cycle over a  (probably) two-term period. 

  • This is a free seminar for Network Subscribers. Feel free to join ( or renew if your subscription has slipped!)
  • Please note that you need to register by Friday 10th January .
  • See the pdf for fuller introduction.

Dates, Details & Booking

Date Tuesday 15th January 2019
Cut off date Thursday 10th January 2019
Presenters Peter Moss, Robin Duckett, Louise Lowings
Please Note: For Network members (free)
Times 1.30 - 3 p.m.
Download info Network Proposal - Languages of Evaluation 1.2 .pdf
Please login as a subscriber first in order to register