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Title: "No-one likes what I say" : a Foucauldian discourse analysis of problematic absenteeism from school
Author: Jones, Catherine Angharad
ISNI:       0000 0004 8500 8238
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2019
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The aim of this study was to explore the discourse around problematic school non-attendance and the implications that it holds for facilitating change. It is currently estimated that around 1-2% of school-registered children and young people display problematic school non-attendance (Elliott & Place, 2019). High levels of absence from school is associated with several negative outcomes, including mental health difficulties, substance misuse, and social and economic deprivation (Kearney, 2008). Welsh statistics from the 2017 / 18 academic year report that 4.1% of adolescents in middle and secondary schools had attendance levels of 80% or below and are considered to be persistent absentees (Welsh Government, 2019). A review of the literature suggests that inconsistencies in the conceptualisation and language around school absence may be inhibiting effective intervention by professionals (Kearney & Albano, 2004). This study uses Foucauldian discourse analysis methodology to explore the discourse around non-attendance. In particular, the focus is upon the actions that are available within the discourse for facilitating change. Five persistent absentees aged 11-16 and three school staff members were interviewed for this study. Seven dominant discursive constructions of the school and non-attenders are identified in the results. These are: school as a place of control, school as a site of public identity, school as judgemental, school as a place that should care and support, non-attenders as 'becoming' and non-attenders as psychologically problematic. The implications of these for Educational Psychology practice are discussed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Ed.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BF Psychology