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ERIC Number: EJ835847
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Apr
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 31
ISSN: ISSN-0004-9441
Policy, Practice and the "Revolving Classroom Door": Examining the Relationship between Aboriginal Spatiality and the Mainstream Education System
Prout, Sarah
Australian Journal of Education, v53 n1 p39-53 Apr 2009
Indigenous academic outcomes are in many ways negotiated at the interface between student spatialities--including their residential patterns and choices--and the mainstream school system. The current model of education delivery rewards regular attendance at well resourced schools. Conversely, sporadic interactions with under-resourced schools generally produce poor educational outcomes. This paper draws on qualitative case-study research in Yamatji country, Western Australia, to present a grounded analysis of the mutually effectual relationship between the mainstream education system and Aboriginal spatiality. It begins with a discussion of how school location and standards influence Aboriginal migration and residence choices, and outlines the significant policy implications of this relationship. It then examines the impacts of Aboriginal itinerancy on student learning and school functionality, and critically evaluates a number of strategies for tackling student mobility in terms of their applicability and appropriateness to Indigenous contexts. The paper ultimately argues the need for researchers, policy-makers and educators to engage more intentionally with the spatial practices of Aboriginal students. (Contains 2 notes and 1 figure.)
Australian Council for Educational Research. 19 Prospect Hill Road, Camberwell, VIC 3124, Australia. Tel: +61-3-9277-5447; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: Practitioners; Researchers; Policymakers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia