Debating Multiculturalism, Panel Discussion 3 - Multiculturalism and the Impacts on Education Policy in England

Wed, 24 Apr 2013 17:15 in Discussion Forums

Where: University of Oxford, Oxford Centre for Christianity and Culture, Regent's Park College, Pusey St, OX1 2LB
Date: 24th April 2013
Time: 17:15

Speakers:

  • Dr Richard Race, Roehampton University
  • Ms Melanie Bashor, Oxford Brookes University
  • Dr Ömer Sener, Research Fellow, Dialogue Society London Branch

Material

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Abstract

This event is the third discussion in the ‘Debating Multiculturalism’ panel discussion series: four discussions led by prominent academics and practitioners exploring and evaluating multiculturalism as an ideology and political project.

This particular panel will focus on the relationship between multiculturalism and education, an area profoundly affected by the policies of multiculturalism, and one playing a key role in determining the dynamics of a diverse society. Exploring the impact of multiculturalism on the UK education system will feed into the evaluation of multiculturalism as a political project. The challenges of educating a culturally diverse population will also be considered more generally, and the merits of different practical approaches to these challenges will be discussed.

In this discussion principal speaker Dr Richard Race and discussants Dr Ömer Sener and Ms Melanie Bashor will address the following questions:

  • How far, and in what ways, has multiculturalism as a political project affected the UK education system?
  • What does ‘multicultural education’ mean?
  • What practical difficulties are faced in implementing ‘multicultural education’? How could they be overcome?
  • What existing or possible initiatives will promote equality, respect for diversity and social cohesion?
  • To ensure that children develop healthy attitudes towards people who are culturally different, should education pay more attention to cultural difference, or less?

Biography of Dr Richard Race

Dr Richard Race is Senior Lecturer in Education in the Department of Education at Roehampton University, London. He is Programme Convenor of the Department’s MA in Education which is delivered on site, off site and internationally in Athens, Greece at ASPETE University. He is author of Multiculturalism and Education (2011) with Continuum International Publishing which is part of the series Contemporary Issues in Education which he also co-edits with Simon Pratt-Adams. He is also co-editor of the forthcoming volume, Precarious International Multicultural Education: Hegemony, Dissent and Rising Alternatives, which is published by Sense with Handel Wright and Michael Singh. His current research is based on Integration and Education Policy-Making which will be the title of his next monograph, in a second book series he is co-editing with Alaster Douglas and Barbara Read with Palgrave Macmillan. He is also co-editor of Advancing Race, Ethnicity and Education with Vini Lander which will also be published with Palgrave Macmillan.

Biography of Melanie Bashor

Melanie received her Bachelor’s Degree in history from Sam Houston State University, located in Huntsville, Texas, in 2006. Her postgraduate work at Boston College culminated in a Master’s Degree in History in 2009.

Her thesis, Building a Tolerant Society: The Origins of New Labor’s Multicultural Education Policy, summed up her work in the history of race relations, immigration control, education, and public policy in Great Britain from 1960–1990.

Melanie then moved into positions as lecturer of history and as adjunct professor at Sam Houston State University and Lone Star College-Montgomery, where she taught undergraduate courses in ancient and modern World History and US History. In 2010–2011, she served as temporary Assistant Professor at Lone Star College-Montgomery; presented at the Western Conference on British Studies in Austin, Texas; and served as a member of the Diversity Dimension on the Foundations of Excellence committee at Lone Star College-Montgomery.

Melanie is currently studying multiculturalism in educational and public policy in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada and France. Her work is primarily comparative and focuses on the history of education in the Atlantic World after the Second World War. The projected title of her PhD is Engineering Tolerance: Evaluating the Origins of Multicultural Polices in the Atlantic World, reflecting work on educational policy, migration, multicultural politics, and globalization.

Biography of Dr Ömer Sener

Dr Ömer Sener is a researcher and freelance writer who holds a PhD in Cultural Studies and Literary Criticism. His research interests include ethnicity, cultural identity, representation and cultural narratives. He is particularly interested in intercultural dialogue and dialogue as an academic concept across disciplines. As a Research Fellow at the Dialogue Society, he has so far worked on a number of academic publications, such as Debating Multiculturalism I, and written articles on the theory and practice of dialogue on the Dialogue Society website. Apart from his academic work, Ömer is also involved in creative writing, with a novel (Water Reflects the Bamboo’s Shadow) and a poetry book (Little Girl and the Angel) to his name. He is also the co-author of the upcoming book Dialogue Theories.

Photos

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