This paper examines macro, meso and micro understandings of policy enactment within Western Australian primary school arts education where a new national arts curriculum is being revised and implemented through a process colloquially known as ‘adopt and adapt’. This paper focuses on how a government led implementation policy has influenced arts teaching and learning in unintended ways. It Includes a theoretical reflection and a consideration of the effects of such policies. Using policy enactment theory as the enquiry lens, four contextual variables are highlighted for their impact on teachers and schools. The variables include situated contexts, material contexts, professional cultures and external factors. Effects are discussed through the perspectives of eleven arts curriculum leaders drawn from in-depth semi-structured interviews. Marginalisation of the arts, the disconnection of schools and teachers to the arts and professional learning impacts are discussed as results of this policy translation.


arts education, policy enactment theory, curriculum implementation, translation, adaptation

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