Researching Holistic Democracy in Schools
The article is an invited response to the following article in the same issue: ‘Bradley-Levine, J. (2017). Examination of the New Tech Model as a Holistic Democracy’. Bradley-Levine reports in her article how she created an opportunity to explore research data with the aim of examining the degree to which New Tech schools were democratic in the sense conceptualised by the notion of holistic democracy which I have developed in my work. My response is in three parts. The first sets out my understanding of the significance of the model of holistic democracy and the purpose of the framework. The second is a review of Bradley-Levine’s findings, with reflections that occurred to me as I worked through these. The third comprises my conclusions. The framework has been applied, in my judgement, in a diligent and systematic way, enabling the creation of a profile of schools showing where indicators of holistic democracy are present and where critical enquiry and further research and reflective dialogue would be worthwhile. My review of Bradley-Levine’s account and analysis also suggests that further work on the conceptual clarity of the framework would be helpful in improving its usefulness.