Increasingly, language from the area of Economics is used about education. Our colleagues in the Economics Department regularly use terms such as customers, market exchange, consumers, commodities, money etc. It is entirely appropriate to engage those terms concerning the transfer of goods, such as coffee or oil, from one person to another. Transactions occur when a person wants to secure an item they desire which they do not provide for themselves. The transaction occurs through the exchange of money for commodity. The value of the commodity has no intrinsic value but has the monetary worth of what someone is willing to pay for it. But is the language of Economics appropriate in matter of education, and do the economic ideas and assumptions faithfully portrays the vision of education we hold?
I suggest that as far as education is concerned, and very specifically private education where parents pay fees, adopting economic language is inaccurate and has a potentially corrosive effect, devaluing and distorting the high vision we have of education.
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