Bridging separate communities: the aspirations and experiences of minority ethnic religious education teachers in England

This article takes as its starting point concerns about community separation that arose in 2001, following outbreaks of violence in English urban centres, and again in 2014, following the so-called "Trojan Horse" case. Despite a series of reports which have highlighted the need to address...

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Bibliographic Details
Published in:Journal of beliefs and values
Main Author: Everington, Judith
Format: Electronic Article
Language:English
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Published: [2015]
In:Journal of beliefs and values
Year: 2015, Volume: 36, Issue: 2, Pages: 165-174
Further subjects:B Social Capital
B religious education (RE)
B minority ethnic teachers
B community cohesion
Online Access: Volltext (Verlag)
Description
Summary:This article takes as its starting point concerns about community separation that arose in 2001, following outbreaks of violence in English urban centres, and again in 2014, following the so-called "Trojan Horse" case. Despite a series of reports which have highlighted the need to address "separation", promote "meaningful contact" between those who differ in terms of ethnicity and worldview and identify teachers of religious education (RE) as key players, researchers have paid no attention to teachers of RE from minority ethnic and religious backgrounds. The article draws on a qualitative study of teachers from Hindu, Muslim and Sikh backgrounds to explore their concerns about pupils' perceptions of separation and the ways in which they attempted to address these in white majority and Muslim majority schools. Communication research and studies based on social capital theory are used to suggest that the teachers used "bonding" and "bridging" strategies as means of encouraging pupils to explore their perceptions of separation, engage in a mediated form of meaningful contact with "the Other" and expand their thinking. The conclusion calls for further research in to the strategies reported and for policy makers to support the recruitment, training and career development of minority ethnic teachers of RE.
ISSN:1469-9362
Contains:Enthalten in: Journal of beliefs and values
Persistent identifiers:DOI: 10.1080/13617672.2015.1046232