From Children's Services to Children's Spaces: Public Policy, Children and Childhood

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RoutledgeFalmer, 2002 - Education - 200 pages
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More than ever before, children are apparently being recognised as social actors and citizens. Yet public policy often involves increased control and surveillance of children. This book explores the contradiction. It shows how different ways of thinking about children produce different childhoods, different public provisions for children (including schools) and different ways of working with children. It argues that how we understand children and make public provision for them involves political and ethical choices.
Through case studies and the analysis of policy and practice drawn from a number of countries, the authors describe an approach to public provision for children which they term 'children's services'. They then propose an alternative approach named 'children's spaces', and go on to consider an alternative theory, practice and profession of work with children: pedagogy and the pedagogue.
This ground breaking book will be essential reading for tutors and students on higher education or in-service courses in early childhood, education, play, social work and social policy, as well as practitioners and policy makers in these areas.

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About the author (2002)

Dr. Janet Boddy has been a researcher at the Thomas Coram Research Unit in London since 1997. Her background is in child psychology and her recent research has focused on studies of parenting, and on services for children and families, including studies of the residential care workforce and of parenting support, with funders including the UK Department of Health and The Home Office.

Claire Cameron has been a researcher at Thomas Coram Research Unit since 1992. Before this she worked at Royal Holloway and Bedford New College. She read sociology and politics at Durham University and then trained as a social worker at Goldsmiths' College. She was employed as social worker in several local authorities before turning to research. She gained her PhD in 1999. Her main research interests are the childcare and the social care workforces, including gender issues, care work over the life course and comparative work, including pedagogy and residential care.

Pat Petrie is Professor of Education at the Thomas Coram Research Unit, Institute of Education, University of London. She has spent many years researching and writing about provision for children of all ages in the UK and abroad. Her major international research has been in school-age childcare, services for children in public care, the 'social pedagogy' approach to children's services, and the developing role of the school, in USA, Sweden.

Valerie Wigfall has been a researcher at the Institute of Education since 1996. She has a degree in sociology from Sussex University, a professional social work qualification and Diploma in Social and Administrative Studies from the University of Oxford, and a PhD from University College London. At the Thomas Coram Research Unit, her work has focused largely on studies of the family, children and young people, with special reference to children in and leaving care.

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