Student drug testing and the surveillance school economy: an analysis of media representation and policy transfer in Australian schools

Taylor, E. (2017). Student drug testing and the surveillance school economy: an analysis of media representation and policy transfer in Australian schools. Journal of Education Policy, doi: 10.1080/02680939.2017.1337228

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Abstract

Anxieties relating to the health, safety and security of schoolchildren have been met with a variety of surveillance apparatus in schools internationally. Drawing on findings from a content analysis of newspaper reports relating to drug testing in Australian schools, this article seeks to excavate the ways in which the media shapes, informs, reflects and instructs narratives pertaining to the use and acceptability of surveillance. Finding that a ‘greater good’ discourse prevails in debates about drug testing in schools, contrary to evidence purporting its ineffectiveness, it is argued that the phenomenon can be explained by the rapidly emerging surveillance school economy whereby education is increasingly exposed to neoliberal corporate priorities and governmental imperatives. Further, finding that policy transfer goes some way to explaining the suggested introduction of random drug testing programs in Australian schools, the article provides critical analysis to understand how surveillance practices come to be activated, understood and negotiated as they cross national boundaries.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Education Policy on 9 June 2017, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/02680939.2017.1337228.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Drug testing, surveillance, policy transfer, neoliberalisation, media, schools
Divisions: School of Social Sciences > Department of Economics
URI: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/18343

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