At the receiving end: Are policies and practices working to keep students in high schools?

  • Vijaya M. Dharan Vijaya Dharan is currently a lecturer in the School of Psychology and Pedagogy, Victoria University of Wellington. She is involved in the training of educational psychologists and also teaches undergraduate teacher training and post graduate courses. As a registered psychologist with a she has worked for nearly 15 years with teachers, parents, schools and early childhood services to make learning accessible for students who have significant behavioural and learning challenges. The experiences gained in working with children and families have reinforced to her that understanding lived experiences and restoring and re-storying lives of some children is pivotal for their long term well being and thereby reducing their exclusion from learning opportunities and society as a whole. As a passionate advocate for social justice, she is deeply interested in the area of “learning for all” and in particular, the various beliefs, perceptions and attitudes of educators that can enhance or hinder this process.
  • Luanna H. Meyer
  • Nicole Mincher


Exclusion occurs when school systems do not have the answers, or are often unwilling to delve deeply into the primary source of the behaviours in focus. “Exclusion, intolerance, “getting rid of’, ‘not my responsibility’, blame, are all symptoms of projection – projected guilt; guilt over dilemmas we don't know how to solve” – (Parffrey, 1994, p.117). Two decades later these words still ring true in our education system.


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Author Biographies

Luanna H. Meyer
Luanna H. Meyer is Emerita Professor of Education at Victoria University. Her research is focused on validating practical, evidence-based approaches for inclusive schools. Currently, she is Editor-in-Chief for Oxford University Press’s OBO Education and is a member of the Technical Review Committee on Behavior for the National Center for Students with Disabilities who Require
Intensive Interventions in the U.S.A. She has been invited to speak in eight countries and 30 US states about her work, and she has published more than 120 journal articles and book chapters. Her 12 books include The School Leader’s Guide to Restorative School Discipline; The Teacher’s Guide to Restorative Classroom Discipline; Making Friends: The Influences of Culture and Development; and Critical Issues in the Lives of People with Severe Disabilities.
Nicole Mincher
Nicole Mincher graduated in 2011 with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Education. In 2012 she completed the first step of the Educational Psychology training by gaining her Postgraduate Diploma in professional development. Nicole is currently undertaking her Masters of Educational Psychology where her research interest lies in equality, social justice and transparency in education.
How to Cite
DHARAN, Vijaya M.; MEYER, Luanna H.; MINCHER, Nicole. At the receiving end: Are policies and practices working to keep students in high schools?. The New Zealand Annual Review of Education, [S.l.], v. 21, july 2012. ISSN 1178-3311. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 21 oct. 2020. doi: