The need for multifaceted analyses of the relationship between how the United
States acknowledges racism and how schooling can be structured to mitigate its negative
impacts has never been greater, especially given the rising and often simplistic attention
to the racial “achievement gap.” In suburban, elite Pioneer City, a series of initiatives I
refer to as “the transformation” aimed to eliminate the racial achievement gap in that
school district through simultaneous efforts to redistribute students from a racially and
economically isolated elementary school and to train all district staff in a particular brand
of culturally relevant pedagogy (CRP; Ladson-Billings, 1995).
In this yearlong study, I used critical ethnographic methods to explore some
tensions between a goal of systemic change and the reproductive forces at play in
schools. My findings complicate preexisting ways of theorizing how CRP can be part of
practical efforts to transform schooling and they identify new possibilities for CRP as a
way to reenvision teaching and teacher education toward deep and enduring change.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. May 2013. Major: Education, Curriculum and Instruction. Advisor: Bic Ngo, PhD. 1 computer file (PDF); iv, 196 pages, appendices A-F.
Mason, Ann Mogush.
Schooling culturally relevant pedagogy: one story about tension and transformation.
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