Schools as securitised spaces: enactments, pedagogies and policies (3 - 2022)


The Journal of Social Science Education will publish a special issue in 3/2022 on the theme ‘Schools as securitised spaces: enactments, pedagogies and policies’

Deadline first submissions: 30 November 2021

This issue will be edited by Hazel Bryan (School of Education and Professional Development, University of Huddersfield , UK), Igor Martinache (University of  Paris 7, Diderot) and Andrea Szukala (Institute of Political Science, University of Muenster, Germany UK)

The securitization of civic education and schooling is currently a major policy focus in the context of securitization of contemporary societies in contexts of radicalisation, terrorism and extremisms. In this edition of JSSE we are keen to explore the state of the governance of security in schools, the microtechnologies employed in security enactment, the role of the teacher as both policy subject and policy (en)actor and the implications of this for schools in resilient democracies and societies. In order to do so we wish to encourage submissions that question the securitization of civic education and the operationalisation of anti-extremism policies in schools. This requires consideration of

  • Definitions and conceptual level: We wish to consider pedagogical, governmental, societal, educational and material dimensions of the concept of security in pedagogical institutions. In this context we especially focus on the ontological and generic aspects of security and risk, including political extremism, preventing violent extremism (pve) and radicalisation, from a multidimensional political-pedagogical perspective.

  • Discursive level: How is the program of security narrated and legitimized? What are the homologies between homeland policies and threat evaluations and the implementation of security in schools?

  • Performative level: The making of security: the devices and the performative dimensions of security and how is security assessed and visualised in schools. What are the architectural and material dimensions of the securitization of pedagogical institutions?

  • Curricular level: the translation of securitization in curricular programs and prevention policies

  • Pedagogical level: What pedagogical considerations are relevant to the relationship and trust between student, teacher and parents in relation to the securitisation of the classroom? How are roles transformed and negotiated? Are classrooms under threat of becoming ‘pre-crime’ spaces?


We are reluctant to impose a very rigid framework but we would be interested in knowing how authors respond to one or more of the following (overlapping) questions:

  • What is the governance of security in education? Which subject areas (Citizenship? Religious Education? Personal Social Health Education (PSHE)?) are especially dedicated to the discussion of radicalisation and extremism? In what ways do different subject areas shape and form young peoples’ experiences? Are there subject-related or pedagogical conflicts?


  • Who ensures policies, where they are in place, are enacted? How do those responsible narrate their role and what are their experiences as both policy subjects and policy actors? What are the issues of interpreting and translating policy into practice in the school? Are there discourses of policy enactment emerging in schools?


  • Who has responsibility at school level for teacher development in this area? Is teacher development undertaken at whole-school or departmental level and what form does this take? How do teachers develop expertise in understanding the processes of radicalisation and knowledge and skills to enable them to act and react in informed ways?  What artefacts are drawn upon to assist teacher development and in what ways are such artefacts securitised or culturally situated?  


  • How do schools articulate their approaches to security to parents and the community? What are the micro-technologies of school securitisation and what part do, for example, school websites, prospectuses and brochures play in communicating school approaches?


  • Is there a potential compromise of trust in the relationship between the student and the teacher when the teacher has a statutory duty to look for and report signs of radicalisation? In such a context the classroom may be viewed as a ‘pre-crime space’ (Heath-Kelly), where the teacher positions the students as potentially pre-crime.  What are the implications in such a context for authentic classroom discussions and rich learning? Is there a ‘chilling effect’ taking place in the classroom where teachers are inhibited from open debate in this area?

We will be pleased to consider work that emerges from a single context (e.g., from one local, regional or national location) as well as from analyses that go across geographical and other areas including comparative perspectives. We will consider reports from European and other countries where language issues and issues of national or ethnic identities are closely connected and contested.

The issue will contain:

  • An editorial in which key themes are highlighted and articles are briefly summarized;
  • 6 articles of between 6-9000 words;
  • 4-6 book reviews (each approximately 4-800 words long) on issues to do with character, citizenship and education.

The focus of the special issue will be education but the editors will welcome theoretical and other material that allows for consideration of issues using insights from a range of academic disciplines and areas (e.g. political science; psychological perspectives; international studies etc.).