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someTitle WHAT IS CURRICULUM? Brad Gobby Introduction Often it’s the seemingly simplest of words that turn out to be the most complex. ‘Curriculum’ is a case in point. This chapter challenges...

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WHAT IS CURRICULUM?
Brad Go
y
Introduction
Often it’s the seemingly simplest of words that turn out to be the most complex. ‘Cu
iculum’
is a case in point. This chapter challenges commonsense understandings of cu
iculum as a
plan of content to be taught to learners. It outlines six different uses of the term in the � eld of
education, although the six described do not make up a comprehensive list of its meanings and
uses. The chapter encourages you to think of cu
iculum as the lived experience of learners in
an educational setting, and to recognise that social, cultural and political forces in� uence the
cu
iculum experiences of learners.
KEY TERMS
cu
iculum experiences
culture
economic inequality
enacted cu
iculum
emergent cu
iculum
funds of knowledge
hidden cu
iculum
intended cu
iculum
lived cu
iculum
null cu
iculum
pedagogy
politics
society
1
5
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iculum ebook : Sociological Perspectives on Education, OUPANZ, 2017. ProQuest Ebook Central,
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ebookcentral.proquest.com/li
curtin/detail.action?docID=5199526.
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CONTESTING CURRICULUM
In Fe
uary 2016, an Australian Federal Government- funded toolkit of learning resources
produced by the Safe Schools Coalition became the object of a political furore. The premise for
creating the resources was that many students in schools are same- sex attracted, transgender,
gender diverse, or born with characteristics that do not �t with the medical norms of male
or female bodies (intersex), and these students experience hardship in school (the respectful
acronym used to refer to this group is LGBTIQ— lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and
queer). The Safe Schools learning resources were designed for primary and secondary school
students by the Safe Schools Coalition, a group of organisations and schools working toward
promoting safe and inclusive school environments for LGBTIQ students, staff and families. The
program, which schools voluntarily opted into, was developed in consultation with schools
and students. It consisted of lesson plans and cu
iculum resources created by the Coalition;
however, it emphasised that principals and teachers must make their own professional
judgments about how to use the resources in their school settings.
To many, this program was a long time coming. Statistics show that most LGBTIQ students
feel unsafe and vulnerable at school. A report for the Western Australian Equal Opportunity
Commissioner (Jones, 2012) noted that 80 per cent of LGBTIQ students experienced abuse at
school. It also reported that because of prejudice, 61 per cent of LGBTIQ students experienced
ve
al abuse, 18 per cent reported physical abuse, and 69 per cent reported other forms of
ullying. In Western Australia, despite 94 per cent of students reporting they had some form of
sexuality education (e.g. with a focus on puberty and procreation), only 12 per cent reported they
were taught that homophobia is wrong. Further, 82 per cent of LGBTIQ students did not classify
their schools as supportive, and 44 per cent considered their schools to be actively homophobic.
Jones and Hillier XXXXXXXXXXobserve that na
ow understandings of gender and sexuality pervade
schools, such that: ‘For some, the message that their sexual or gender identity is something to
e ashamed of, and even physically beaten out of them, is a poignant form of school sexuality
education beyond “of�cial” lessons’ (p.  439). These experiences, where ‘being normal is the
only way to be’, are con�rmed elsewhere (see e.g. Martino & Pallotta- Chiarolli, 2005; Robinson,
Bansel, Denson, Ovenden & Davies, XXXXXXXXXXAlthough these statistics are a cause for concern, a
promising �nding of the research is that schools that had explicit anti- homophobia policies
to protect LGBTIQ students had a higher number of LGBTIQ students report that their schools
offered a supportive school environment (Jones, 2012; Jones & Hillier, XXXXXXXXXXIn other words,
actively naming and addressing sexuality- based discrimination makes a positive difference
to the experiences of these children and young people, like naming and addressing racial,
cultural and religious prejudice. Given these facts, the Safe Schools program sought to address
the bullying and discrimination experienced in schools by LGBTIQ students. In fact, it was
considered so worthwhile by educators working in schools that 526 schools voluntarily signed
up to participate in the program.
What appeared to be worthwhile and important resources for many working in schools
aised the hackles of some conservative government politicians in Canbe
a. Reminiscent
6 PART 1: UNDERSTANDING CURRICULUM
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Go
y, Brad, and Rebecca Walker. Powers of Cu
iculum ebook : Sociological Perspectives on Education, OUPANZ, 2017. ProQuest Ebook Central,
XXXXXXXXXXhttp:
ebookcentral.proquest.com/li
curtin/detail.action?docID=5199526.
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Brad Go
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of the moral panic that followed the harmless depiction of a same- sex couple with children
as an ordinary family on the ABC’s children’s television program Play School in 2004 (Taylor,
2007), many conservative politicians and media commentators reacted angrily to the Safe
Schools resources. They demanded the Safe Schools Coalition be de- funded. One conservative
politician said: ‘Our schools should be places of learning, not indoctrination’ (Anderson, 2016).
The program’s opponents, most of whom have had no direct experience of schooling other than
eing a student many decades ago, claimed the cu
iculum material was age- inappropriate.
That is to say, they considered that by talking about gender and sexuality, innocent children
were being sexualised and
ainwashed into socially inappropriate ways of thinking (i.e. that
gender and sexuality is complex). (See Gay Alcorn’s ‘The reality of Safe Schools’ XXXXXXXXXXfor more
information about the program and reactions to it.)
In response to the upheaval by his backbench, on 26 Fe
uary 2016 the Prime Minister,
Malcolm Turnbull, ordered an independent review into the program. The Review of
appropriateness and ef�cacy of the Safe Schools Coalition Australia program resources (Louden,
2016) was conducted by respected Professor Bill Louden. Completed on 11 March 2016, the
eview found that, while a few resources were not entirely appropriate for some students, the
program itself was appropriate. It also found that the resources aligned with the program’s
objectives and would increase support for and reduce prejudice against LGBTIQ students.
Despite this, the enraged backbenchers who instigated the Prime Minister’s review would
not let go of the issue. They rejected the review’s conclusions and challenged the Prime
Minister to do more. On 18 March 2016, ironically the sixth Annual National Day of Action
Against Bullying and Violence, the Prime Minister intervened again by announcing the
program would be dramatically changed beyond the recommendations of Louden’s review.
Fronting the media, the Federal Education Minister, Simon Birmingham, announced changes
to the program that included restricting involvement to secondary schools, restricting some
esources to counselling sessions, editing the lesson plans and requiring parents’ consent
for their children to participate. Birmingham said that ‘parents should have con�dence in
what is taught … especially about potentially contentious issues … “Parents should have a
ight to withdraw their child from classes dealing with such matters”’ (‘Government reveals
changes to controversial Safe Schools program’, XXXXXXXXXXBut who decides what a ‘contentious
issue’ is?
Given the response of others to the Safe Schools program, it is clear that what is controversial
and contentious to some is common sense to others. Stephen Dawson, the Federal Labor Party’s
spokesperson for mental health, reacted to the changes with: ‘What people seem to forget is
that this program is there because it is needed. The reality is that many young people are still
ullied because of their sexuality or their gender at school’ (Hill, XXXXXXXXXXGreens Senator Robert
Simms addressed the fears of the program’s critics: ‘Opposition to the Safe Schools Coalition
seems to be based on the absurd idea that simply by talking about differences in sexuality
or gender identity you’re going to recruit people. Anyone with the most basic understanding
of human sexuality knows how ridiculous that is’ (Medhora, XXXXXXXXXXThe Victorian Premier
Daniel Andrews, whose state �rst developed the program in 2010, posted this comment to
7 CHAPTER 1: WHAT IS CURRICULUM?
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Go
y, Brad, and Rebecca Walker. Powers of Cu
iculum ebook : Sociological Perspectives on Education, OUPANZ, 2017. ProQuest Ebook Central,
XXXXXXXXXXhttp:
ebookcentral.proquest.com/li
curtin/detail.action?docID=5199526.
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social media: ‘Let’s be honest here: I don’t think these extreme Liberals are actually offended
y the structure of the program, or the teachers who lead it. I just think they’re offended by
the kids who need it’ (Anderson, XXXXXXXXXXAcademic Victoria Rawlings criticised the moral panic
su
ounding the resources. She observed that ‘young people are exposed to a vast amount
of content and navigate this in various ways in their day- to- day lives’ and that the political
eactions to the program suggest ‘there is something particularly deviant or wo
ying about
diverse sexual identities or gender identities’ (Rawlings, XXXXXXXXXXSo, where some people perceived
the program as a threat, others saw a program geared towards inclusivity.
The extraordinary response to the Safe Schools resources re�ects the ongoing struggle
for power over cu
iculum. Such incidences are not isolated. Another stark example of
this struggle is the recent review of the Australian Cu
iculum. After years of consultation,
with its implementation only just commencing, the Australian Cu
iculum was subject to
an independent review following the Liberal– National Party Coalition victory at the 2014
federal election. The new Federal Education Minister,
Answered Same Day Jun 25, 2020 Swinburne University of Technology

Solution

Anju Lata answered on Jun 26 2020
142 Votes
Running Head: EXPLORING AND CONTESTING CURRICULUM
EXPLORING AND CONTESTING CURRICULUM 8
EXPLORING AND CONTESTING CURRICULUM
    ASSESSMENT- REPORT
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1. Understanding Cu
iculum Experiences…………………3
2. Open Ended Interviewee’s Questions……………………4
3. Interviewee’s Context……………………………………5
4. Interviewee’s Responses…………………………………6
5. Findings………………………………………………….6
6. Reflection………………………………………………..7
7. References……………………………………………….8
UNDERSTANDING CURRICULUM EXPERIENCES
Cu
iculum is the structure or plan of content that is taught to the learners in an educational setting (Go
y, 2017, pp.5). The cu
iculum involves the subjects, knowledge and skills the department of education and the government wants the students to learn. The experience of learners’ cu
iculum is affected by the social, political and cultural forces. In reality, the cu
iculum moves through the planned and unplanned lived experiences of the students in the schools (Go
y,2017, pp.10).In Australia the School Cu
iculum is based on Australian Cu
iculum Assessment & Reporting Authority (ACARA) and Early Learning Years Framework (ELYF) of Australia (Go
y,2017, pp.16).
There are many forces (Economic, Cultural and Social Inequalities) in society which directly or indirectly influence the lived cu
iculum experiences of learners. There is a direct relationship between socio economic background of students and their performance in studies (Go
y,2017, pp.11).
CURRICULUM IN CONTEXT
The lived cu
iculum may have certain complexities depending on the philosophies of the educator and their interpretations in the classroom.
1. Enacted Cu
iculum: All the students of same class are not taught the same thing in every school in Australia. Because the cu
iculum is always interpreted and translated differently by the different educators. This can be due to varying knowledge, values, experiences, prejudices and beliefs of educators about the learners, different resources available to the educators and learners, the classroom or school setting environment, and the expectations of the parents and principal.
2. Negotiated Cu
iculum: It includes a conversation between the educators and the students and their communities to understand their experiences, interests and strengths (Go
y, 2017, pp.20). It enhances the opportunities for the learners to have communication with the adults and for the adults to understand the learners.
3. Emergent Cu
iculum: It involves a child centered approach where the teachers do not impose any plan on them but directs them to meaningful experiences by observing their lives, interests and concerns, asking questions, listening them and guiding them , moving towards ongoing process of learning without any pre-planning (Go
y, 2017, pp.21).
4. Hidden Cu
iculum: The learner learns many things by just being a part of the school like the rituals of school, punctuality, hygiene habits, how to interact, and daily routine activities at school. It is mainly based on the decisions and choices of the educators and largely reflects their beliefs and values (Go
y, 2017, pp.22).
5. Null Cu
iculum: It includes the topics the educators generally ignore from the official cu
iculum like sensitive issues based on death, sex and domestic violence etc (Go
y, 2017, pp.24).
6. Lived Cu
iculum: It includes all the planned and unplanned experiences of learners in the learning setting (Go
y, 2017, pp.24).
EDUCATORS’ PHILOSOPHY
The learning settings should be more like a joyful place and a collaborative workshop for the learners to go to and explore their minds (Down, 2017,pp.126). The educator’s role should not be dominant but supportive. The philosophies of the educators are largely based on their views and expectations from the learners. According to Smyth (2011), a critical reflection of classroom practices can be done to describe the cu
ent practices of educators, to inform what theories are expressed through those practices, to confront the causes, assumptions and values behind those practices and finally to reconstruct the practices to do things differently and...
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