Faith-inspired Muslim parents’ school choices and attitudes in the cultural west and Australia

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Abstract

All parents want the best accessible, available and affordable school for their children. Yet, the literature highlights that school choice for middle-class parents in the cultural West is a deliberate decision and a reflection of their salient identities. For racialised middle-class Western parents, school choice is an instrumental investment to secure social upward mobility and minimise the harms of racism for their children. Research focusing on Western middle-class Muslim parents highlights that accommodation of Muslim identities and ethno-religious values is pivotal in parental school choice. This is expected due to the rise of Islamophobia in the cultural West since 9/11. The semi-structured interviews with faith-inspired middle-class Muslim parents in Australia bring a new dimension to the parental school choice literature. Regardless of carrying more or less similar concerns for their children in an Islamophobic climate, middle-class Muslim parents’ school choices vary based on their childhood schooling experiences in the Australian context, diverse parenting styles and mentalities and their children’s varying personalities demanding a particular type of school setting. This article demonstrates there is no one size fits all Muslim parent in terms of deciding which school is the best for their children in an Islamophobic climate.

Original languageEnglish
Article number746
Pages (from-to)1-23
Number of pages23
JournalReligions
Volume12
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sep 2021

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