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This article explores how early-career teachers working in high-poverty schools in Australia account for their decision-making during critical classroom incidents. Classroom management solutions are problematized by investigating how two teachers take up particular positions, make decisions, and enact what they believe to be ‘quality teaching’ in context. Through a combination of interviews and observations of teachers ‘in situ’, we examine what these teachers do, why they do it, what informs their decisions, and how they reflect on their actions. The complexity of teachers’ work in schools located in high-poverty areas is highlighted. We argue that both early-career teachers prefer to position themselves within ‘pastoral’, in contrast to ‘disciplinarian’, discourses, as part of constituting the school as a site of possibility and teachers who advocate for youth growing up in poverty.

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Journal Article

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