The Johnson report : a critique of selected aspects : a thesis ... for the degree of Master of Education at Massey University

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Massey University
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In August 1977 Mr J G Johnson, Chairman of the Committee on Health and Social Education, submitted to the New Zealand Minister of Education his Committee's report, Growing, Sharing, Learning. The Report of the Committee on Health and Social Education. This Report, subsequently to become known as the Johnson Report, declared that the Committee had endeavoured, in the light of its terms of reference, to produce a blueprint for action in the realm of health and social education. This thesis examines selected aspects of this Report and argues that in the areas examined the Committee has been unsuccessful in its endeavour. Following a brief historical introduction, four observations concerning response to the Report are presented. Against this background of response and within the historical context outlined, selected aspects of the Report are then examined in detail. Under the heading "General Concerns" the Committee's statements on the topics of "Research", "Social Education", "Academic Standards" and "School Climates" are examined in turn. Conceptual confusions are exposed, ambiguities are revealed and the detail necessary in a blueprint is shown to be absent. Under the heading "Specific Concerns" those areas of the Committee's Report which have occasioned most public debate, viz: "Moral, Spiritual and Values Education" and "Education About Human Development and Relationships", are then considered in some detail. In addition, the area of "Teacher Training", an area seen by the Committee as the key to change in education, is also considered. It is claimed that in all these areas the lack of conceptual clarity, the lack of precision in expression and the lack of any effective attempt to grapple with the central issues involved, militate strongly against the use of the Report as a blueprint for action. By way of conclusion a summary statement relating to the central claim of the thesis is presented.
New Zealand, New Zealand Committee on Health and Social Education Growing, sharing, learning, Health education, Educational psychology