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INSPIRING EDUCATION | oise.utoronto.ca
Advancing the cause of equity, social justice and democracy in education.
Advancing the cause of equity, social justice and democracy in education.




Educational Equity and Inclusion in Neoliberal Times

Principal Investigator:

Dr. John Portelli

Other Investigators:

Drs. Jim Ryan (OISE), Reva Joshee (OISE), Ann Vibert (Acadia), Brenda Spencer (Alberta)


This research aims to offer a new understanding of how policy discourses interact in complex ways to influence school practice.  Using a ‘policy web’ metaphor, we hope to gain a better sense of how policy discourses are currently shaping education. We will begin by identifying and defining the neoliberal policy discourses that are circulating in three provinces across Canada (Alberta, Ontario and Nova Scotia). After comparing the provincial contexts we will examine the impact of these discourses on school-level practice. The goal of this study is to illustrate how the neoliberal context influences educational equity and inclusion at the local level, and to offer recommendations for negotiating this context in support of social justice work in public education.

Interviews with educators and educational leaders are currently underway, if you would like to participate please see the attached letter of information here.


The Micropolitics of Social Justice Leadership in Education

Principal Investigator:

Dr. Jim Ryan

Other Investigators:

Drs. John Portelli (OISE), Reva Joshee (OISE), Denise Armstrong (Brock)


The purpose of this study is to examine how social justice leaders use their power to achieve social justice ends in their educational institutions. In particular the study is designed to:

-Examine how social justice leaders view political activity within their institutions

-Explore how social justice leaders understand their political environments

-Document the political strategies that social justice leaders employ to attain their goals

-Describe the manner in which social justice leaders strategically monitor their actions

-Understand that obstacles that social justice leaders face when attempting to employ political strategies

-Develop political strategies that will assist social justice leaders to attain their goals

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