Becoming a Queer Teacher: Perceptions of Queer Teacher Candidates in Initial Teacher Education Programs
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This study used narrative inquiry to explore the experiences of queer teacher candidates during their Initial Teacher Education Programs (ITEP) in Ontario. The study sought to further investigate: (a) stories teacher candidates tell about being queer in ITEPs; (b) how queer teacher candidates respond to social bias and stereotypes in the learning community; and (c) if and how queer teacher candidates’ narratives can inform teacher education reform. Through interviews and lettered correspondence, the participants and I share stories of being queer in ITEPs. The study examined our stories using Clandinin and Connelly’s (2000) 3 commonplaces of temporality, sociality, and place, as well as, Ciuffetelli Parker’s (2013, 2014) 3-R narrative elements of narrative reveal, narrative revelation, and narrative reformation. Four themes emerged: the complexity of the queer teacher candidates’ experience; the separation of personal and professional identity; silencing; and shame. These poignant narratives contribute to the literature by providing a context for teacher education programs and researchers to reconsider teacher education reform.