This qualitative study examines the experiences of three informal teacher leaders in diversifying suburban high schools as they developed strategies to address racial inequity at their schools. Each participant in this study represented a distinct racial identity (Asian-American, Latino, white) with varying degrees of personal and professional race consciousness and positionality at their schools. Our study is framed by Banks (2014) theory of multicultural education, which suggests that schools must attend to five elements of school culture and practice in order to practice authentic multicultural education. With support from university faculty, the teacher leaders identified culturally responsive pedagogy and inclusive curriculum strategies to address the problem of inequitable learning conditions in their schools. We found that informal leaders in schools represent an often untapped resource who can energize and guide colleagues in targeted equity strategies that support broader macro-level diversity, equity and inclusion programs. This study explores the steps that three diversifying suburban schools took to demonstrate a commitment toward racial equity for BIPOC students, and how informal teacher leaders navigated the work with administration, colleagues, students, and community. We hope in this study to shed light on the commitments, policies, and practices that schools might develop to reflect a more democratic, inclusive learning environment for all students but particularly for BIPOC students and especially in places where they represent the minority in the school and do not feel that their voices are heard.
Schmidt, Jon J.; Burton, Sammie Marie; Ferguson, Kelly; El Ashmawi, Yvonne; Neumann, Teresa; Dominguez, Vanessa; and Moody, Travis
"Pursuing Racial Equity in Suburban High Schools: How Informal School Leaders Rise to the Challenge of Addressing Racial Inequity,"
Race and Pedagogy Journal: Teaching and Learning for Justice: Vol. 5:
4, Article 2.
Available at: https://soundideas.pugetsound.edu/rpj/vol5/iss4/2