Excluded Girls’ Stories of Belonging

Prof Doc Thesis

Warner, N. 2021. Excluded Girls’ Stories of Belonging. Prof Doc Thesis University of East London School of Psychology https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.89w5x
AuthorsWarner, N.
TypeProf Doc Thesis

Exclusion from school is an issue of national and local concern. With more boys experiencing exclusion than girls the research is dominated by a male perspective. This research aimed to provide an in-depth exploration of the experience of girls who have been excluded and are currently attending Alternative Provisions (AP). A sense of belonging is linked to more positive outcomes therefore this research was underpinned by an exploration of the belonging these girls have experienced in their previous and current settings along with their hopes for the future.
This exploratory research had a constructivist epistemology and an ontological position of relativism. It accepts that multiple realities are constructed through lived experience and individually constructed and focuses on the stories of three secondary age girls. The research took a narrative approach and a guided interview and life grids were used to support the gathering of data remotely. Participants’ narratives were re-storied according to Clandinin and Connelly’s (2000) threedimensional space, offering rich and detailed insights into the complexity of their experiences. In the second phase of analysis, the three storied narratives were analysed using narrative thematic analysis, and several themes and subthemes were identified for each of the research questions.
The girls were found to experience higher levels of belonging in their alternative provision, feeling a lack of autonomy in their mainstream experiences. Positive teacher relationships contained the most powerful narratives. The girls found in the alternative provisions that male students can experience increased support from staff and that more resources were directed towards their experiences. The girls outlined hopes and aspirations for the future, but these were limited by a fear of a repeated experience of a lack of understanding around their needs. The implications of the research findings for both national strategy, Educational Psychology practice and Educational settings are discussed.

KeywordsExclusion; Belonging; Alternative Provision; Secondary; Girls
PublisherUniversity of East London
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.89w5x
File Access Level
Publication dates
Online01 Oct 2021
Publication process dates
Submitted15 Jul 2021
Deposited01 Oct 2021
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License: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0
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