I want to begin this chapter with a personal example of some recent international politics surrounding school reforms. I have just returned from spending a semester as a Visiting Professor at the University of Melbourne in Australia. During my time in Melbourne, I was asked to give a lecture to school principals and teachers in which I was to critically reflect on the policies that were being proposed in education and on how we could make schools more responsive to communities there and elsewhere.
After I was given the invitation, a number of members of the Victoria State Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD) came to hear me give a more academic address at the university on the politics and effects of neoliberal agendas in education. Within a few days of that university address, my invitation to speak to school leaders was cancelled. “My services were no longer required.” What I had to say was “too controversial.”
Michael W. Apple