A critical discourse analysis of Manitoba’s safe schools documentation and implications for students
Students who have been labeled as exhibiting behaviour difficulties in the school system have some of the worst academic and social outcomes of any student group. In most Canadian provinces, responses to student behaviour and misbehavior are legislated through Safe Schools policies, directives, guidelines and curriculum support documents, which guide school districts and individual schools in responding to student behaviour and misbehavior. This project aims to conduct a critical discourse analysis of Manitoba’s Safe and Caring Schools documentation in order to consider the ways in which provincial policy directives and guidelines construct children and their behaviours and subsequently to consider how to better support students, particularly those who tend to be marginalized by existing school based responses to student behaviour. By deconstructing the ways in which children, behaviours, and school responses are constructed in policy documents, the project aims to make recommendations for policy-makers and educators to better support students, particularly those who are most marginalized by/within the school system.