Date of release: Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Greenwich CampusRadical perspectives on topical issues in education and contemporary culture are the focus of an international conference at the university this week. Bullying, prison education, the teaching of tennis and sexual violence in schools are among the topics for discussion, along with the theme of sustainability.

Discourse, Power and Resistance, which starts today (Tuesday 9 April), provides a platform for 148 speakers from 30 countries, including university staff and postgraduate students.

Keynote speakers include Professor Roger Slee, Director of the Victoria Institute for Education, Diversity and Lifelong Learning at Melbourne University, who will talk about his research interests in inclusive education. Reacting to reality TV is the topic of Professor Beverley Skeggs, from Goldsmiths, University of London, while Professor Diane Reay, from the University of Cambridge, will explore the continuing power of working class exclusions from education.

The voices of young people in education will also be heard at the conference. Primary school children will report on the results of research that they carried out themselves on friendships, schools and hobbies. The ten and 11 year-olds were supported by Dr Ewa Siorenko and Dr Maria Papapolydorou from the university's School of Education, to develop their own research questions, collect and analyse data and write up their findings.

An older group of students, aged 15 and 16, who have been excluded from mainstream schools but are committed to their future education and employability, will also attend the conference. They will perform a specially-commissioned work on the theme of inclusion and exclusion and present their a documentary film about fashion , made by working alongside industry professionals as part of an innovative “Passport to Employability” project in the London Borough of Lambeth.

“The concerns of learners, teachers and researchers at all stages of education – from pre-school to postgraduate and post-doctoral – will be at the heart of our interdisciplinary discussions,” says Jennifer Patterson, Senior Lecturer in the School of Education. “The conference will also challenge and critique the influence of powerful interests in the policy-making process.”

The three-day Discourse, Power, Resistance (DPR) conference is an annual event, now in its 13th year, hosted for the second time on the university’s Greenwich Campus, in collaboration with Jerome Satterthwaite, DPR's lead organiser. It draws on research expertise in the university’s School of Education in the Faculty of Education & Health.

Story by Public Relations