Re/imagining school climate: towards processual accounts of affective ecologies of schooling

Eve Mayes, Melissa Joy Wolfe, Leanne Higham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

This article reviews and reconceptualises – remembers and imagines – previous and possible methodological approaches to the study of the concept of school climate. Mapping three methodological approaches to school climate, we consider how each approach brings the concept of school climate into being, and the in/exclusions at work in each approach. Questions are raised about the politics of forming and naming a climate, the effects of such measurement and inscription of a school's climate, and the affects that escape and exceed the measurement of a climate. We consider the value of the concept of climate – particularly its ecological connotations, and the possibility of this concept for moving beyond individualised, responsibilitised notions of reform in schools. Working with the conceptual resources of affect and feminist new materialist theories, school climate is re/imagined as indeterminate, exceeding the spatial boundaries of a school, and inescapably political. Such an approach to school climate affirms and creates possibility and alternative modes of being in schooling relations – beyond critique of present approaches to measure and intervene into a school's ‘climate’ alone. We reconceptualise school climate as processual, continually made and remade in and through the everyday practices of schooling, including the research event.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100703
Number of pages8
JournalEmotion, Space and Society
Volume36
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020

Keywords

  • Affect
  • Indeterminacy
  • Postqualitative
  • School climate
  • Spatiality

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