The School as an Arena for Co-Creating Participation, Equity, and Well-Being—A Photovoice Study from Norway
Peer reviewed, Journal article
MetadataShow full item record
Original versionInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(16):8252 10.3390/ijerph18168252
Schools may play an essential role as an arena for co-creating community activities that enhance well-being, equity, and citizenship. Still, there is limited knowledge about physical and non-physical factors that contribute to well-being within such approaches. The aim of this study was to identify important factors for well-being as perceived by pupils, school employees, and parents in a community school in Norway. The participatory method photovoice was used, and seven pupils, six employees, and four parents participated by taking photos used as the basis for six focus group discussions. Transcripts of the discussions were analyzed using Systematic Text Condensation. The analysis showed that the participants experienced that the school’s built and natural environment, the activities happening there, and the human resources and organization at the school facilitated perceptions of safety, inclusion, and cohesion, which in turn contributed to well-being. Furthermore, the results showed that co-creating schools as a community arena could be an innovative way of ensuring participation, equity, and well-being in the community. Such an approach might be especially important in deprived areas or in multi-ethnic communities. An important prerequisite to succeed is the openness of the school’s staff to engage in co-creation with other stakeholders in the community.