Why interculturalism does not always translate into action: Insights from teachers in an Australian primary school

Tualaulelei, Eseta ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8393-7015 and Halse, Christine (2022) Why interculturalism does not always translate into action: Insights from teachers in an Australian primary school. The Australian Educational Researcher. pp. 1-16. ISSN 0311-6999

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Abstract

For intercultural education to impact learners and, in turn, wider society, teachers must turn intercultural perspectives into actions in their professional contexts. This article examines why teachers who hold positive intercultural views might not be compelled to teach to these in their classrooms. Focusing specifically on education for culturally diverse learners, this article presents a critical ethnographic study of two teachers working in a multicultural Australian primary school. It analyses the tensions that complicate teachers’ work for intercultural education, and suggests that competent, well-intentioned teachers might be discouraged from responding pedagogically to their students’ cultural or linguistic backgrounds because of perceived constraints in the contemporary neoliberal educational environment. This prompts our recommendation that future research seek ways to open up new conditions of possibility for teachers to act on their perspectives including opportunities for increased cross-cultural engagement and dialogue.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Education (1 Jul 2019 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Education (1 Jul 2019 -)
Date Deposited: 07 Jun 2022 03:00
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2022 03:00
Uncontrolled Keywords: Intercultural education; Culture; Language; Teacher agency; Neoliberalism
Fields of Research (2020): 39 EDUCATION > 3904 Specialist studies in education > 390410 Multicultural education (excl. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, Māori and Pacific Peoples)
39 EDUCATION > 3904 Specialist studies in education > 390401 Comparative and cross-cultural education
39 EDUCATION > 3902 Education policy, sociology and philosophy > 390299 Education policy, sociology and philosophy not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 16 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 1602 Schools and learning environments > 160201 Equity and access to education
16 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 1603 Teaching and curriculum > 160399 Teaching and curriculum not elsewhere classified
16 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 1602 Schools and learning environments > 160203 Inclusive education
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s13384-022-00523-6
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/48527

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