Too often “evidence-based” policy has involved limiting rather than broadening alternatives, privileging particular forms of evidence over others, and narrowing consultative processes.
It is more about whose evidence is valued, and for what underlying purpose, than employing an “evidence-based” approach to policy making.
Don’t get me wrong: it’s essential that policy and practice are based on solid evidence. But too often only half the picture is revealed. Either evidence is sought to justify an existing preferred position, or the complexities of teaching and learning are glossed over in favour of an “evidence-based” silver bullet.