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Balancing securitization and education in schools: Teachers’ agency in implementing the Prevent duty

Elwick, A; Jerome, L; (2019) Balancing securitization and education in schools: Teachers’ agency in implementing the Prevent duty. Journal of Beliefs and Values , 40 (3) pp. 338-353. 10.1080/13617672.2019.1600322. Green open access

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Abstract

Since the introduction of the Prevent duty across the UK, schools have had to balance the need to fulfil their responsibilities under the duty – often understood to include monitoring and surveillance – with their ultimate purpose to educate their students. This positions teachers within a particular set of tensions about their own beliefs about education, their values, and their roles and relationships with young people and communities. This paper draws on interviews with classroom teachers and members of school leadership teams from ten schools, in order to compare how teachers have understood and responded to those tensions. The paper will focus on the various ways in which teachers frame the policy, and the ways in which they exercise agency in their responses. Drawing on an ecological approach to theorising teacher agency our data reveals how teachers develop different responses to anti-extremism policy depending on their role; their school contexts; and their own beliefs. Whilst in some important regards the statutory Prevent duty has ‘closed down’ some options, nevertheless teachers exercise agency to interpret and enact policy and, when translating the policy into a curriculum context, also make ‘leaps’ of interpretation as concepts such as fundamental British values are turned into lessons. Our analysis highlights how teacher agency helps to account for the variations in implementation and also opens up new avenues for investigating and critiquing anti-extremism policy in education.

Type: Article
Title: Balancing securitization and education in schools: Teachers’ agency in implementing the Prevent duty
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/13617672.2019.1600322
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/13617672.2019.1600322
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: anti-extremism; counter-terrorism; teacher agency; securitization; schools; citizenship education
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10072668
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