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Medium 9781475811834

Taking It to the Streets: A New Line of Inquiry for School Communities

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Christa A. Boske

Lillian Benavente-McEnery

Taking It to the Streets: A New Line of Inquiry for School Communities

ABSTRACT: Educators must develop effective ways of interacting and working with students of diverse backgrounds. In this 2-year study, home visits were utilized to build a stronger, more impactful learning community for all stakeholders. Participants included 2 school leaders, 1 school social worker, 9 teachers, 2 parents, and 4 elementary children. The theoretical framework involved the funds of knowledge stance and investigated how school leaders and teachers redefined their roles to engage with their school community. Findings indicate the critical influence of people’s backgrounds, educational philosophies, and dispositions in building bridges between school and home and establishing meaningful relationships with students and families.

Our children came from Vietnam, Philippines, Mexico, Columbia, and Guatemala. They come for a better way of life. [She starts to cry.] I didn’t know this poverty exists. One child was diligently chewing on his pencil. He told me he didn’t have enough money for a pencil sharpener. He sharpens like this at home. How can things like this happen in this country? I can go one mile north and be in a school that doesn’t have children who live like this. Here we have children who go hungry, don’t have soap at home, and come to school wearing the same uniform with holes and stains. What will become of our children and their families if we don’t begin to show them we love them, that we are human?

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Medium 9781475828931

A Social Network Approach to Examine K-12 Educational Leaders’ Influence on Information Diffusion on Twitter

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Yinying Wang

Nicholas J. Sauers

Jayson W. Richardson

A Social Network Approach to Examine K-12 Educational Leaders’ Influence on Information Diffusion on Twitter

Address correspondence to Yinying Wang, Department of Educational Policy Studies, College of Education, Georgia State University, P.O. Box 3977, Atlanta, GA 30302–3977. E-mail: ywang103@gsu.edu

ABSTRACT: This study investigated the relationship between the leader’s gender, leadership position, Twitter use, and influence on information diffusion in the communication network on Twitter. We collected the 30,200 latest tweets of 151 active Twitter users who held educational leadership positions. Results of social network analysis and multiple regression analyses suggest a gender inequality in the leader’s influence on information diffusion in the network. Findings also indicate no significant relationship between leadership position (district vs. building) and a leader’s influence in the network. Moreover, Twitter following was positively associated with the leader’s influence in the network, whereas the number of followers, weekly tweets, and the time of Twitter account creation did not predict the leader’s influence. Practical implications on how leaders use Twitter to disseminate information are discussed.

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Medium 9781475816242

About This Edition

International Journal of Educational Reform Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

In this spring edition, IJER pays special tribute to Peter McLaren. For nearly a decade, McLaren has served the journal as editor of the internationalist section and is stepping down this year from that post. His work stands as an important contribution to education reform, although for reasons that mainstream educators may resist. Over the years, McLaren’s corpus of essays and interviews have presented a decidedly Marxist orientation. McLaren is respected by his subjects for his questioning the assumptions of globalization and its implications for education reform. In addition, through McLaren’s interviews the marginalized voices in our world are given a platform for discussion.

We exist now in a world marked by devolution, or the redistribution of power down to local levels. As such, we often associate the process of devolution with conservativism, which certainly maintains a dominant hold on devolutionary strategy in the United States. In the United States, devolution usually translates into administrative forms such as performance-indicated approaches that supposedly allow lower-level participants in education greater choice in allocation of resources. Sometimes those means to educational ends are successful, and sometimes not.

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Medium 9781475842418

Randall et al.

Jenlink, Patrick M. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

The Intersection of Imagination, Literacy, and Design

Content Area Curation in the Secondary Classroom

Régine E. Randall

Mia L. Mercurio

ABSTRACT: Recent interest in artifactual literacies has helped the authors of this article rethink how they teach pre-service and in-service teachers as well as collaborate with K–12 teachers. Learning that involves collecting and curating artifacts as a type of literacy instruction may create a link between school and life because students are given the power and the opportunity to create a tangible connection between new content learning and what already exists. This practice is applicable across all content areas because every field has seminal work that continues to guide and shape how teachers present knowledge and instruct students.

Teachers who teach teachers” is how we often explain what we do as professors of education. As teacher educators and reflective practitioners, we try to help pre-service and in-service teachers learn how to marry a desire to teach creatively with the need to teach strategically. This article reflects not one intended research study; rather, it is a compilation of our years of experience as college professors both at the university and in the field. As such, it is not written in a traditional research format; however, the examples provided throughout have been used with written permission of the students and schools we have had the honor to work with. As educators we believe it is as important for us to continue to question, learn, and grow, as it is for our students.

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Medium 9781475819250

Elementary Teachers: Forming Political Identities as Social Agents

Teacher Education and Practice R&L Education ePub

KAREN SIRNA

ABSTRACT: This article examines tensions that elementary teachers negotiate in struggling to recognize themselves as having political identities as critical educators capable of influencing social change in education. Drawing from a 6-month collective case study with four female elementary teachers, the article discusses the research finding that teachers do not recognize themselves as agents of social change. Using data as support, the article presents and speculates on the ways that tensions in language and perceptions may influence the teachers’ lack of identification with working from a social justice perspective.

Teachers can do nothing to change the conditions in which their students may live, but they can work to change their own biases as well as the institutional structures that act as obstacles to student learning.

—Nieto (2000, p. 49)

Elementary schools, as part of broader society, express the social, political, cultural, and economic power struggles occurring within the social order. As a result of these dynamics, the interests, values, and knowledge of certain dominant groups are privileged, maintaining inequities and injustices between individuals and groups. These conditions influence teachers’ and children’s lives along with the ways in which they understand themselves and their role in education and society.

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