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Juggling School-Research partnerships: funding, methodologies, accountability and impact.

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In this presentation Associate Professor Stinson considers challenges and dilemmas for researchers in school-based research, as illustrated by one case study from Y-Connect, a three-year school-university research project, funded by the Queensland government’s, “Collaboration Innovation Fund”. The study is situated in one inner-city, government high school with a high proportion of new arrival students. Many of the students migrated (or sought asylum) from 52 countries, with 75% of the population having an ESAL background. Inspired by John Carey’s (2005) claim that “redemptive self-respect” (Carey, 2005, 255) can be engendered through active participation in arts learning, Y-Connect supported artists and teachers to work together to provide arts-rich environments and arts-informed pedagogies throughout classes in the Junior Secondary years. The questions guiding Y-Connect were: How has participation in Y-Connect impacted on the young people involved? What factors have enabled and constrained the success of the project? And, what further impacts are evident within and beyond the school community? This presentation critically analyses the research journey in this context and questions the appropriateness of systemic accountability, as well as what is considered impact.

Dr Madonna Stinson is Associate Professor in the School of Education and Professional Studies, Griffith University. Her research and teaching concentrates on creative approaches to curriculums and pedagogies, in particular with regard to drama and language learning. She is particularly interested in methodologies that allow researchers to consider how we know and understand what is happening in the space between teaching and learning. Madonna’s work considers innovations and connections within creative pedagogies and curriculums with the potential of offering opportunities for student agency and improving learning across the lifespan. Madonna has worked as a primary and early years teacher, a secondary Head of Performing Arts, a curriculum writer, an artistic director, an actor and playwright before becoming an academic. Recent research projects include Age Appropriate Pedagogies for the Department of Education and Training, Queensland (2015-2016), Y-Connect, a 3-year teaching-artist project in a Brisbane secondary school with a high proportion of students from asylum-seeking backgrounds, and 200 Children’s Voice, what young children say about learning

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