Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Incorporating equity dynamics in professional development: Building Educator Cultural and Professional Competency
by Graham-Johnson, Judith, Ed.D., Fielding Graduate University, 2014, 305; 3629593
Abstract (Summary)

Since the statement of then -Secretary of Education Paige on the "soft bigotry of low expectations," the necessity of holding "high expectations" appears to be generally accepted as an important factor in student achievement. Secretary Paige asserted that not all teachers hold high expectations of their students, yet the possibility of such thinking is not typically acknowledged among educators. Instead there appears to be a presumption that all teachers do hold high expectations for their students and there is no evidence that this assumption is ever questioned. The assumption that high expectations are universally held negates belief that expectations should be part of the professional conversations in which educators engage and precludes the topic from being included in the professional development programs in which school staffs are engaged.

My review of literature includes learning from the other social sciences on beliefs, cultural assumptions, and expectations. This dissertation examines the development of negative stereotypes and manifestations of those stereotypes in the educational experiences, past and present of African Americans, as representatives of those segments of the population who have historically been under-served by education.

The results of the survey conducted as part of this study indicate that expectations are rarely included in professional development programs. Additionally, the results demonstrate a lack of consistency among districts in approaching similar challenges. Finally, a model developed to increase the effectiveness of professional development is proposed.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Henderson, Lenneal J.
Commitee: Duffy, Curt P., Ishtai-Zee, Szabi, Kim, Helen, Mahon, Lee
School: Fielding Graduate University
Department: The School of Educational Leadership for Change
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 75/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational leadership, Teacher education, Continuing education
Keywords: Educational leadership, Equity in education, Mindfulness, Professional development, Stereotypes in classrooms, Teacher expectations
Publication Number: 3629593
ISBN: 978-1-321-06742-2
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