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Medium 9781475816167

Power and Place: Metropolitan Resource Struggles in the United States 1980\p=n-\1990

International Journal of Educational Ref Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

DOUGLAS R. COCHRANE

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The 1980s was a period of profound social and economic change within the US. We are just starting to evaluate the impact of some of these changes on people and institutions. Many of these changes related directly to the rise of the global economy. The supply and demand of jobs in particular sectors, regions and areas of the country created tensions. Recession fueled fears of permanent job loss and a lessening of the country’s social and economic position.

The role of education as a tool for economic progress was first raised as a challenge with “A Nation At Risk” (1983). At the same time, there was a growing political demand to reduce the federal role in education, fostered by a perceived need to balance the federal budget and an agenda for decentralizing education that included strong advocacy for states’ constitutional rights in relation to education, and increased local control of school districts. This resulted in a reduction in education funding from the Federal government. Coinciding with this, increases in monies to education in the 1980s came largely from state and local governments.

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Medium 9781475819335

Cultural Sensitivity: The Basis for Culturally Relevant Teaching

Teacher Education and Practice R&L Education ePub

MAXIMINO PLATA

ABSTRACT: This article examines cultural sensitivity as a basis for culturally relevant teaching. It argues that classroom teachers are overwhelmed by the responsibility to educate an increasingly culturally diverse population. And because extant teaching strategies have failed to produce desired outcomes in these students, a culturally relevant curriculum based on teachers’ cultural sensitivity is proposed. Characteristics of culturally sensitive teachers and culturally responsive teaching are outlined. Finally, benefits of providing a culturally relevant curriculum are discussed.

Schools have the rare privilege of being a setting where individuals from varied cultural backgrounds and different languages, values, beliefs, and worldviews come together for an extensive period for a common purpose—to acquire an education. In the educational setting, classroom teachers are key professionals charged with the responsibility of transmitting important social and academic knowledge and skills. Therefore, teachers are a powerful force in the lives of students: What teachers perceive, believe, say, and do can disable or empower students (Kea & Utley, 1998).

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Medium 9781475816525

The Role of the Educational Leadership Program Coordinator: A Distributed Leadership Perspective

International Journal of Educational Ref Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Donald G. Hackmann

Carolyn L. Wanat

ABSTRACT: This qualitative study examined the educational leadership program coordinator’s role in selected research universities, through interviews of 10 coordinators. These individuals were responsible for quasi-administrative curriculum development and outreach duties. Coordinators were committed to leading their programs despite extensive time commitments and few incentives. Two issues created barriers to distributing leadership responsibilities: faculty autonomy and program faculty size. Lacking formal authority, coordinators sometimes found it difficult to enlist the assistance of faculty colleagues. Individuals in tenure-line positions viewed their responsibilities as challenging their continued scholarly productivity, whereas those non-tenure-track positions noted that their work performance was evaluated using different criteria.

In many colleges and universities, educational leadership programs employ insufficient numbers of full-time faculty to justify status as stand-alone academic departments.1 Consequently, to promote organizational efficiency, educational leadership programs and pedagogically related disciplines, such as higher education administration and educational foundations, may be combined into one department within the college of education. Department chairs (or heads) serve as the administrative leaders of these multiple-program units and are expected “to represent all specializations within the department with equal enthusiasm” (Hecht, Higgerson, Gmelch, & Tucker, 1999, p. 25). This position is an official appointment with responsibilities delineated in institutional policy (Gmelch & Miskin, 1995): The chair is granted formal authority to lead and manage the efforts of the unit, represent the department within the university and with external constituent groups, enforce policies, and distribute institutional resources (Hecht et al., 1999; Lucas, 1994; Tucker, 1992). These responsibilities encompass not only the department in its entirety but also the individual specializations contained within the unit.

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Medium 9781475819182

Preparing Teachers for Critical Social Consciousness: Issues of Engagement and Resistance

Teacher Education and Practice R&L Education ePub

ELZA MAGALHÃES MAJOR AND GEORGE PERREAULT

ABSTRACT: This article examines the responses of European American monolingual English-speaking preservice undergraduate education majors to critical issues related to the education of language minority students in P–12 schools. Data analysis of autobiographies, journals, portfolios, thematic units, position papers, and case studies indicated a correlation between levels of reflectivity and levels of engagement in critical social consciousness by the participants. Implications for the preparation of teachers point to ethical and moral challenges for teacher educators when preservice teachers do not engage in critical reflections on sociocultural factors that affect the academic achievement of linguistic minority students. Recommendations include systemic infusion of knowledge about and practice with English language learners across disciplines in teacher education, dialogical and collaborative reflective practices among teacher educators, and stricter teacher licensing requirements.

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Medium 9781475824711

School-Based Professional Development as an Organizational Learning Mechanism

International Journal of Educati Reform Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

School-Based Professional Development as an Organizational Learning Mechanism

The Significance of Teachers’ Involvement

Orit Avidov-Ungar

ABSTRACT: This study examines the relations between school-based professional development as part of a national reform and schools’ organizational learning. The sample includes 196 teachers. Teachers’ involvement throughout the workshop was found to be positively and significantly related to the level of organizational learning at school. This relationship was mediated by the quality of the workshop. From the interviews, it was found that teachers’ involvement was related to both their perception of the workshop’s relevance and their willingness to internalize lessons from the workshop. The study emphasizes the importance of teacher involvement not only as a means to improve workshop quality but also to promote organizational learning within schools.

KEYWORDS: organizational learning; professional development; educational reform; teachers’ involvement

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