The Evolution of Control: The Convergence of Neoliberalism and Neoconservatism in Performance Based Funding Policies

Angelo Letizia

Abstract


The purpose of this paper is to illustrate how policymakers draw on both neoliberal and neoconservative elements to craft educational policies. When employed together, neoliberalism and neoconservatism can create a powerful mechanism for educational policymakers and others to drive educational change that is more market based. While separate, and even at times contradictory, it is important to understand how both of these theories work in conjunction with each other. I specifically examine performance based funding in the United States.  Performance based funding policies are state level policies which stipulate that public institutions of higher education must meet certain targets, such as producing a certain amount of degrees in a given year (McClendon & Hearn, 2013). Currently, 30 U.S. states employ a version of performance based funding. I specifically examined Tennessee because Tennessee is the national leader of performance based funding (Gorbunov, 2013).


Keywords


Neoliberalism; Neoconservatism; Performance based funding; Accountability

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ISSN 1920-4175 Critical Education