Special feature: Decolonising the School Curriculum

A London Review of Education special feature

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Decolonising the School Curriculum

London Review of Education special feature


In the wake of George Floyd’s murder and subsequent anti-racism protests, calls to decolonise the school curriculum have gained traction around the world. Internationally, there are attempts to pivot educational systems towards decolonising national school curriculums, for example in Australia (Harvey and Russell-Mundine, 2019), Bolivia (Lopes Cardozo, 2012), Canada (Munroe et al., 2013) and the USA (Ladson-Billings, 2014). In the UK, such discussions have intensified following protests from the Black Lives Matter movement, both in the UK and elsewhere.

A sharper focus on the causes of these global protests has resulted in growing pressure on governments to resolve discriminations embedded within school curriculums, and thus to decolonise and diversify education. Hundreds of thousands have signed petitions saying that schools should not only teach the links between the slave trade and imperialism, but also acknowledge the contributions and achievements of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people (Arday et al., 2020). This movement aspires to transform inaccurate syllabuses and exclusionary pedagogical practices, and to eradicate the biased knowledge that school curriculums can produce and communicate.

Scholars have argued that schools, like universities, can be important sites of intervention and disruption in challenging colonialist legacies in the curriculum and other structures, and in rehumanising these institutions (Dawson, 2020; Gleason and Franklin-Phipps, 2019). Others have warned of the dangers of relativism in the curriculum that may even entrench racial thinking (Williams, 2017).  

This London Review of Education special feature showcases high-quality and intellectually provocative papers that theoretically and empirically interrogate why or if the school curriculum needs to be decolonised.


Publication date: from February 2022


Guest editors

Denise Miller, University of Greenwich, UK
Emma Towers, King's College London, UK
Shone Surendran, University College London, UK


Article list

Decolonising the school curriculum: a special feature

Authors: Denise Miller, Shone Surendran, Emma Towers
Published: 18 January 2023

Conspiring to decolonise language teaching and learning: reflections and reactions from a reading group

Authors: Peter Browning, Katy Highet, Rowena Azada-Palacios, Tania Douek, Eleanor Yue Gong, Andrea Sunyol
Published: 16 November 2022

Decolonising the school curriculum in an era of political polarisation

Authors: Shahnaz Akhter, Matthew Watson
Published: 10 August 2022


Considering the role of social media: #BlackLivesMatter as a pedagogical intervention to decolonise curriculum

Authors: Thashika Pillay, Claire Ahn, Kenneth Gyamerah and Shuyuan Liu
Published: 8 June 2022


Decolonisation of curriculum: the case of language education policy in Nepal

Authors: Prem Prasad Poudel, Liz Jackson and Tae-Hee Choi
Published: 31 May 2022


Decolonising curriculum in education: continuing proclamations and provocations

Authors: Richard Race, Pere Ayling, Dorrie Chetty, Nasima Hassan, Stephen J. McKinney, Lauren Boath, Nighet Riaz and Saima Salehjee
Published: 24 May 2022


The rebirth of the call for antiracism in schools: learning from the past

Author: Yaa Asare
Publsihed: 18 May 2022


An overview of Indigenous peoples in Chile and their struggle to revitalise their native languages: the case of Mapudungun

Authors: Paulina Moya-Santiagos and Javiera Quiroga-Curín
Published: 11 May 2022


What does it mean to decolonise the school music curriculum?

Author: Chris Philpott
Published: 2 March 2022


Decolonising the school experience through poetry to foreground truth-telling and cognitive justice

Authors: Catherine Manathunga, Shelley Davidow, Paul Williams, Alison Willis, Maria Raciti, Kathryn Gilbey, Sue Stanton, Hope O’Chin, Alison Chan
Published: 16 February 2022


Decolonial approaches to school curriculum for Black, Indigenous and other students of colour

Author: Monisha Bajaj
Published: 9 February 2022


Methodologies for decolonising geography curricula in the secondary school and in initial teacher education

Authors: Cyrus Nayeri and Elizabeth A.C. Rushton
Published: 2 February 2022


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