chapter  7
23 Pages

Discourses of Race and Racism in the Schools

BySuki Ali

This chapter considers the way in which schools provided discourses of 'race' and racism which impact on children's racialisation processes. The changes in the types of language used and methods of combating discrimination and prejudice in education cannot hide the 'unpalatable truth' that Homi Bhabha describes as follows: Cultural diversity becomes a bedrock of multicultural education policy in England. There was a wide variation in the levels of understanding that children had about the term 'race'. In fact, this was often completely separated conceptually from the term 'racism'. However, the criticism of the telling of tales and the separation of quarrelling children were reported in all of the schools. On this basis the children felt that they could not go to teachers for help, with the exception of the named one or two in each school. They felt particularly aggrieved by this when the incidents involved repeat offenders. They could all name particular culprits in their respective schools.