Changing schools: How policy implementation can impact on the literacy learning of mobile students

Andrea Lynch
James Cook University

Since 2002, Queensland state schools have been required to document a 'whole school literacy plan' built around eight essential aspects. This document is to be reviewed annually and updated to reflect the current community profile and the school's literacy curriculum (Education Queensland, 2006).This research project investigated the different ways three early years teachers (Years 1-3) from three adjacent state schools have implemented this policy and what this may mean for students who change schools – particularly the significant number of students known to move between these schools (Hill & Lynch, 2007). Previous research based on test data has shown that changing schools can disrupt learning, particularly in the early years (Strand & Demie, 2006; Temple & Reynolds, 1999) but there has been little or no research into what it might mean for students as literacy learners. Using a case study approach within a critical theory framework, the current research project found that policy is interpreted and enacted differently in different contexts, creating different ways of doing school and doing literacy. This can result in mobile students having to renegotiate what doing school and doing literacy means.

Australasian Journal of Early Childhood – Volume 34 No 2 June 2009, pp. 47–53.

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Vol. 34 No 2 June 2009
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