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Theorising the meso-level space of school ethos and cultural pedagogy in relation to securitisation policy.




This paper looks empirically at how the UK’s policy of securitisation within education impacts on the meso-level space of cultural ethos and pedagogy within two majority non-white secondary schools and one majority non-white further education college. It does so primarily by documenting how British Values and Prevent policies enabled through the British Government’s Counter-Terrorism and Security Act have impacted on institutional ethos both in terms of objective structures and staff subjectivities. It is argued here that the security-curriculum ensemble is a recognition of this meso-level space by central government and represents a development in moves made to restrict access and agency within this space, and even to circumscribe this space through symbolic violence. This paper concludes by urging school/college leaders to exercise their agency at the meso-level; to recognise this space as a place for democratisation and decolonisation as an equitable alternative to enforced cultural ‘upgrading’ and in(ex)clusion presented through securitisation policy that is in reality an instrument of symbolic domination.

Acceptance Date Jun 2, 2021
Publication Date Jun 13, 2021
Journal Journal of Education Policy
Print ISSN 0268-0939
Publisher Routledge
Publisher URL


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