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Bureaucratic constructions of sexual diversity: ‘sensitive’, ‘controversial’ and silencing

By Jacqueline Ullman and Tania Ferfolja


National research illustrates the high degree of discrimination that prevails against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) students resulting in diminished educational outcomes, both academic and social. This phenomenon is influenced by the prevalence of whole-school silences around LGBTQ topics in many Australian schools. This paper presents an analysis of the New South Wales (NSW) homophobia in schools policy, as well as both NSW state and Australian federal curriculum and syllabus documents in the health and physical education key learning area. This analysis illustrates how contradictory framing and messages; silences and omission; and various discursive constructions of the LGBTQ subject together produce silencing technologies that have critical implications for the implementation of education, both in this key learning area and across the schooling sector

Topics: Homophobia, Education--Curricula, Education--Government policy
Publisher: Teaching Education
Year: 2014
DOI identifier: 10.1080/10476210.2014.959487
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