The SAGE Handbook of African American Education
Publication Year: 2009
This Handbook received an honorable mention at the 2009 PROSE Awards. The PROSE Awards annually recognize the very best in professional and scholarly publishing by bringing attention to distinguished books, journals, and electronic content in over 40 categories.“This volume fills the tremendous void that currently exists in providing a much-needed lens for cultural leadership and proficiency. The approach provides a wide divergence of perspectives on African American forms of leadership in a variety of diverse leadership settings.”—Len Foster, Washington State University The SAGE Handbook of African American Education is a unique, comprehensive collection of theoretical and empirical scholarship in six important areas: historical perspectives, teaching and learning, PK–12 school leadership, higher education, current issues, and education policy. The purpose of the Handbook is to articulate ...
- Front Matter
- Back Matter
- Subject Index
- Section I: The Education of Black Folk: Historical Perspectives
- Chapter 1: To Gain and to Lose: The Loving School and the African American Struggle for Education in Columbus, Ohio, 1831–1882
- Chapter 2: African American Educators and the Black Intellectual Tradition
- Chapter 3: “They Rose or Fell Together”: African American Educators and Community Leadership, 1795–1954
- Chapter 4: The History of Black Women Graduate Students, 1921–1948
- Chapter 5: Caught between a Rock and a Hard Place: The Dissolution of Black State Teachers Associations, 1954–1970
- Section II: The Landscape of Teaching and Learning for African Americans in U.S. Schooling
- Chapter 6: Identity, Agency, and Culture: Black Achievement and Educational Attainment
- Chapter 7: Cultural Community Practices as Urban Classroom Resources
- Chapter 8: Preparing Teachers of African American Students in Urban Schools
- Chapter 9: African American Teachers' Caring Behaviors: The Difference Makes a Difference
- Chapter 10: After “It Takes a Village”: Mapping the Terrain of Black Parental Involvement in the Post-Brown Era
- Section III: African American Leaders in PK-12 Educational Leadership
- Chapter 11: African American Principals and the Legacy of Brown
- Chapter 12: Leadership Challenges in K-12 Urban Education: Prospective African American Administrators' Views on Educating African American Students and Closing the Achievement Gap
- Chapter 13: The Confluence of Race, Gender, and Generation in the Lives of African American Women Principals
- Chapter 14: Race, Law, and Leadership: Exploring the Interest-Convergence Dilemma
- Chapter 15: African American Superintendents in Public School Districts
- Section IV: African Americans in Higher Education
- Chapter 16: Exclusions and Illusions: Rethinking the Mysterious UC Admissions Process That Disadvantages Deserving African American Students
- Chapter 17: Hip Hop: A Source of Empowerment for African American Male College Students
- Chapter 18: Campuswide Climate: Implications for African American Students
- Chapter 19: Historically Black Colleges and Universities: Catalysts to Liberation?
- Chapter 20: The Power of Pathways: Strategies for the Preparation of African American Faculty
- Section V: Current Issues: Theory and Research on the Participation of African Americans in U.S. Education
- Chapter 21: Critical Race Studies in Education and the “Endarkened” Wisdom of Carter G. Woodson
- Chapter 22: Educating and Counseling African American Students: Recommendations for Teachers and School Counselors
- Chapter 23: The Education of African American Children in Charter Schools: Four Case Studies
- Chapter 24: Disproportionality of African American Children in Special Education: Definition and Dimensions
- Chapter 25: Toward Understanding African American Males and K-12 Education
- Section VI: African Americans Shaping Educational Policy
- Chapter 26: Creating Opportunities for Educational Success: Oral Histories of four African Americans Shaping Education Policy
- Chapter 27: Realities and Responsibilities in the Education Village
- Chapter 28: Creating a New Model of Education for African American Children: Mobilizing Stakeholder Partners in Service to Sustained Academic Success
- Chapter 29: Beyond Segregation: The Continuing Struggle for Educational Equity 50 Years After Brown v. Board of Education
- Chapter 30: Educating Black Youth for Economic Empowerment: Democratic Economic Participation and School Reform Practices and Policies
Editorial Board[Page ii]
- Dr. Frank Brown, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
- Dr. Len Foster, Washington State University
- Dr. Annette Henry, University of Washington-Tacoma
- Dr. Joyce Elaine King, Georgia State University
- Dr. Elmira Mangum, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
- Dr. Anne Pruitt-Logan, Professor Emeritus, The Ohio State University
- Dr. James Upton, The Ohio State University
Copyright © 2009 by SAGE Publications, Inc.
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher
SAGE Publications, Inc
2455 Teller Road
Thousand Oaks, California 91320
SAGE Publications Ltd.
1 Oliver's Yard
55 City Road
London EC1Y 1SP
SAGE Publications India Pvt. Ltd
B 1/I 1 Mohan Cooperative Industrial Area
Mathura Road, New Delhi 110 044
SAGE Publications Asia-Pacific Pte. Ltd.
33 Pekin Street #02-01
Far East Square
Printed in the United States of America
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
The SAGE handbook of African American education/[edited by] Linda C. Tillman.
Includes bibliographical references and indexes
ISBN 978–1-4129–3743–6 (cloth)
1. African Americans—Education—Handbooks, manuals, etc. 2. African American teachers—Handbooks, manuals, etc. I. Tillman, Linda C. II. Title: Handbook of African American education.
Printed on acid-free paper
08 09 10 11 12 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
Acquiring Editor: Diane McDaniel
Editorial Assistant: Leah Mori
Production Editor: Sarah K. Quesenberry
Copy Editor: QuADS
Proofreader: Victoria Reed-Castro
Indexer: Will Ragsdale
Typesetter: C&Digitals (P) Ltd.
Cover Designer: Candice Harman
Marketing Manager: Christy Guilbault
Our children, if respected, and if exposed to good teaching, have the genius to master any content, even alien content.
The single most worrisome change for the African community and its children is the loss of our community's influence over the education and socialization of our children. This is the precise struggle that we began in earnest in 1865, out of enslavement, with many ensuing episodes that mark the continuing struggle, including the early period of the 50s and 60s desegregation documented by Charles V. Hamilton.
Certainly it is the task of educational researchers to illuminate whatever the essential realities are, hegemony and success in spite of it, and where possible, to communicate findings in a clear way to those who need the data and interpretations.
Our acute problem is this: How do we gain sufficient influence and leverage to change the course for our children? How can research and evaluation be used to change our trajectory, reframe the problem, and guide us to valid solutions?—III (Nana Baffour Amankwatia II) (2007)
It is my pleasure to serve as the general editor for the Handbook of African American Education. I am also grateful for the opportunity to honor the memory and work of the late Dr. Asa G. Hilliard III whose words begin this preface. These quotes were part of Asa's W. E. B. Du Bois Distinguished lecture for the AERA Research Focus on Black Education Special Interest Group in April 2007. As I worked on the completion of this volume, Asa's words seemed to reflect much of the intent and purpose of a Handbook of African American Education. I offer them as a “libation” to the publication of this volume.
Additionally, I want to recognize the citizens of New Orleans, Louisiana, who were affected by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, and especially the African American students, teachers, and administrators in the New Orleans Public Schools (NOPS) system. As a former faculty member at the University of New Orleans and a resident of the lower ninth ward, I observed the educational environment for the majority of African American children in New Orleans prior to the onslaught of Katrina. Before Katrina, African American children in the NOPS were underserved and undereducated. As a faculty member, I trained future NOPS principals and worked in schools where I investigated problems that plagued the district: shortages of certified teachers, underfunding, violence, and the warehousing of students in deteriorating and unsafe buildings. Today, New Orleans’ public educational system is a patchwork of several different minisystems and is plagued by high absenteeism among students and teachers, low student enrollments, a shortage of teachers and administrators, and parents who are largely uninformed about the specifics of how to access public education for their children. Indeed [Page ix]more than 2 years after Katrina, the NOPS system continues to struggle to educate its majority African American student population. Thus, in many ways Katrina exacerbated the already dismal educational conditions for children in the NOPS. Additionally, Irvine and Foster (1996) have noted that access to Catholic education has provided many African Americans with an alternative to public education. This was particularly the case in New Orleans where significant numbers of African American students attended Catholic schools before Katrina. In the aftermath of Katrina, many Catholic schools have not reopened or are struggling to remain fiscally solvent. Thus, Katrina not only caused the loss of lives, homes, hospitals, businesses, and university programs, and altered the cultural norms of the city, it also resulted in a tremendous social injustice—the denial of an education to many African American children. As we continue to work on behalf of Black children, we must not forget the specific circumstances of those students affected by Hurricane Katrina.
This volume of work represents the collective efforts of many individuals whose knowledge, expertise, and vision helped to move this Handbook from an idea to a reality. The intellectual contributions of these scholars to this effort were not surprising to me. Indeed, many African American scholars have devoted their life's work to researching and writing about the education of Black people in this country. Their scholarship has influenced and encouraged me to ask important and often complex questions about the state of Black education at the K-12 and post-secondary levels. Among those questions are the following: What do we know about the education of Black people? What challenges do Black people face in the U.S. educational system? What must be done to improve the educational outcomes and life chances of every Black child? In what ways can educational researchers, practitioners, parents, and policymakers work to change conditions and deficit perspectives that affect these outcomes? While the answers to these questions may appear to be simple, the condition of many urban school systems and the academic achievement levels of many Black children in urban, suburban, and rural districts would suggest that we have yet to provide answers that will lead to a socially just educational system for all Black children.Historical Perspectives
The impetus for this Handbook came not only from my recognition of the extensive historical contributions that have been made by African American scholars, but also from my admiration of those Black folk who, despite what appeared to be insurmountable odds, fought to gain access to education for themselves and their children. The early struggles to gain access to, and control of, their own education can be seen in the collective and individual efforts of many African Americans who articulated a philosophy of Black education (Booker T. Washington, Carter G. Woodson, W. E. B. Du Bois, Anna Julia Cooper), and those who worked to establish programs and institutions that would provide an education for Blacks (the Common School Movement, Sabbath Schools, Bethune Cookman College, Freedom Schools).
Numerous Black postsecondary institutions such as Bethune Cookman College had close affiliations with the Black church. Black church denominations played a significant role in this struggle and were in the forefront of educating African Americans during and after slavery. For example, when the African Methodist Episcopal Church opened Wilberforce University, it became the first university owned and operated by Blacks. In a discussion of the church's leadership, Tillman (2004) wrote,
In 1826, Daniel Payne, an African Methodist Episcopal Bishop started a school in Charleston, South Carolina, for free Black children and adult slaves. The school was closed in 1834 when Whites became fearful that free Blacks might have access to and be influenced by abolitionist literature. The South Carolina legislature passed a law that prohibited free Blacks from keeping any school or other place of instruction for teaching any slave or free person of color to read or write. Payne left Charleston and moved north where, because of his leadership as a principal and a minister, he became one of the most influential minister-educators in the Black community. He later founded Wilberforce College (now Wilberforce University) in Xenia, Ohio, the oldest college of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. (p. 107)
[Page x]Anderson (1988) wrote that the Zion School, established in 1865, was another example of how Blacks took control of their own education. The school was one of the first all-Black schools in the south and was led by an all-Black teaching and administrative staff. Pre- and post-Brown exemplars of educational institutions and organizations that were established for African Americans include the Piney Woods School, an interdenominational Christian school founded by Laurence C. Jones almost 100 years ago in rural Mississippi; the Council of Independent Black Institutions founded in 1972; the University of Islam Schools, which are owned and operated by the Nation of Islam; and the Westside Preparatory School of Chicago, founded by Marva Collins in 1975. The work of Carol D. Lee and Haki Madhubuti, who along with others founded the New Concept Development Center (NCDC) of Chicago, is particularly noteworthy. The Center opened in 1972 at the height of the Black Power and Black Arts movements, and the founders envisioned operating a school that would provide resources and leadership from within, rather than from outside of the Black community. Lee (in press) in a discussion of the Center wrote,
Over the past 35 years, New Concept Development Center (NCDC) of Chicago, Illinois, along with other independent Black institutions (IBIs) across the country, has strived to educate and socialize African American children to assume their future roles as political, intellectual, spiritual and economic leaders in their communities and the world. Its vision is one in which Black people are self-reliant, productive, self-defining, and firmly rooted in family and community—a vision NCDC's founders and staff hope will be impossible for its students to lose.
The NCDC began as a Saturday school program that provided educational support to Black children aged 2 to 12 and has expanded to include three African-centered charter schools under the umbrella of the Betty Shabazz International Charter Schools. Lee noted that alumni of the Center have graduated from historically Black colleges and universities as well as predominantly White institutions, including Stanford, Northwestern, and Princeton. One of the charter schools, the Betty Shabazz International Charter School, has been identified as a school of distinction within the Chicago Public Schools system.
These and numerous other exemplars are representative of the commitment of African American scholars, parents, teachers, administrators, and community members to establish educational institutions and programs that foster high expectations and provide a safe and nurturing learning environment for their children. These exemplars also illustrate how the self-defined knowledge of African Americans is placed at the center, rather than on the margins of teaching and learning as well as educational discourse, practice, and policy (Tillman, 2002).Contemporary Perspectives
Current discourse and practice regarding the education of African Americans in this country is often framed in deficit perspectives about underqualified teachers, ineffective leadership and administration, poor student test scores, underfunded school districts, and a lack of parental involvement. Additionally, media accounts frequently detail the plight of Black males: their disproportionate numbers in special education, high dropout rates, poor college-going rates, and the likelihood that they will end up in prison. In her discussion of the state of Black education, Joyce Elaine King (2005) wrote,
“Excellence, Superior Quality, Perfection, Knowledge, Critical Examination”: these highly valued terms are unlikely to be used by researchers, educators, students, parents, or policy decision makers anywhere in the world. Indeed, for most Black students, particularly those attending dysfunctional, resource-starved schools in the United States, a leader among “civilized” nations, Black education is synonymous with underachievement and academic failure. (p. xxi)
King's analysis should be of concern to us because as policymakers continue to debate about standards, accountability, and the distribution of resources to schools, many of our African American children are being held hostage in these dysfunctional, resource-starved school systems.
[Page xi]A plethora of contemporary issues directly affect the leadership, participation, and academic achievement of African Americans in the U.S. educational system. For example, the U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled against voluntary integration plans in K-12 public schools in Seattle, Washington, and Louisville, Kentucky (Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District, 2007). These plans were designed to prevent racial segregation in schools by allowing a student's race to be considered in making school assignments. How will the Court's decision ultimately affect African Americans’ access to equitable education not only in Seattle and Louisville, but across this country? The declining numbers of Black teachers, principals, and superintendents is also a concern. Who will replace those Black teachers and administrators who leave the profession and retire? Teacher training programs like those that were found at Cheney State Teachers College (Pennsylvania), Bluefield State Teachers College (West Virginia), and Morris Brown College (Georgia) no longer exist, and it is difficult to find teacher education programs that are educating a critical mass of African American teachers. Additionally, when will we begin to view teaching as a profession, and how will we improve working conditions in schools so that more African Americans will choose careers in teaching and administration?
At the state and federal level, the uncertainty of the impact of the No Child Left Behind Act on the educational outcomes of Black children continues to be debated in educational and policy circles. While the Act is intended to benefit African Americans and students in other subgroups, it is not clear whether significant numbers of Black children have benefited from the Act's emphasis on standards and accountability. As the late Dr. Asa G. Hilliard III noted in his W. E. B. Du Bois Distinguished Lecture (2007),
We are well into the NCLB initiative, and I cannot see how we could call the results achieved as anything more than a miserable failure. Since NCLB, United States academic achievement is actually down, expectations are down, and promises for the future may soon be down as well. (p. 17)
With a reauthorization of the Act, we can only hope that the revised Act will address the issues that Dr. Hilliard identified and will benefit all African American students.
Space does not permit me to discuss all the issues that negatively affect the participation and education of African Americans in U.S. society. However, it is clear from these examples that there is much work to be done as we attempt to articulate an agenda for Black education for students in urban, suburban, and rural schools as well as those in charter, private, and alternative settings.The Purpose of the Handbook
The publication of this Handbook coincides with the growing interest in the theory, research, practice, and stories of African American scholars and leaders with respect to their status in education. For example, a recent publication titled Beyond the Big House: African American Educators in Teacher Education (2005), edited by Gloria Ladson-Billings includes the stories of seven nationally recognized African American teacher educators. Their stories represent “a reconceptualization of the process of teacher preparation from a unique and long-overdue perspective” (book advertisement).
A major purpose of this Handbook is to articulate the perspectives of African American scholar/leaders and policymakers about issues affecting the education, participation, and leadership of African Americans in U.S. society. Thus, the content of the Handbook is intended to promote inquiry and dialogue, and the development of questions and ideas that focus on critical practice, theory, and research about African Americans in the U.S. educational system. The Handbook addresses six major areas: Historical Perspectives on the Education of African Americans; The Landscape of Teaching and Learning for African Americans in U.S. Schooling; African Americans in PK-12 Educational Leadership; African Americans in Higher Education; Current Issues: Theory and Research on the Participation of African Americans in U.S. Education; and African Americans Shaping Educational Policy.
[Page xii]Ladson-Billings (2005) noted that the scholarship on Black education is often criticized for being too narrow (subtext: It's too Black). Yet we know from the work of a very long list of distinguished African American scholar/leaders that African Americans have a long and rich history of excellence at the PK-12 and postsecondary levels in teaching, leading, learning, parental involvement, policymaking, and attending and graduating from postsecondary institutions. The work of these and other scholars has had a significant influence on the field of education and has caused us to be more thoughtful in our research, teaching, and scholarship as we wrestle with current realities and attempt to pose solutions. Indeed, the contributors to this Handbook represent a critical mass of African Americans who excel as scholars and policymakers in a variety of educational, private, and public arenas. Thus, it is in the context of this long and rich history of excellence that we present this volume of scholarship that builds on previous work and sets forth a new agenda for researching, writing, and theorizing about the education of African Americans.
This Handbook focuses on a specific racial group—African Americans. This focus is intentional on my part; that is, I wanted to “center” the cultural frames of reference, experiences, challenges, and successes with respect to the education of African Americans. Thus, I have purposely chosen not to use the more general term women and minorities. As Williams (2005) noted, focusing on Black people allows one to “see important elements that have been overlooked” (p. 5) in previous theory and research. Furthermore, the work in this Handbook is also intended to present counternarratives to theory and research on African Americans that fail to capture the broad spectrum of experiences within African American culture. Indeed, African Americans are not a monolithic group; rather, they are poor, middle-income, and wealthy Americans; attend public, private, and charter schools; have high and low standardized test scores; attend public, historically Black, predominantly White, and Ivy League postsecondary institutions; and espouse a variety of cultural norms and values. Thus, the authors present their work from an “assets-oriented perspective” incorporating the range of African American experiences.
The work in the Handbook is also cross-disciplinary and is intended to reach a wide audience that includes educational researchers, teachers, leaders, policymakers, and students in undergraduate and graduate-level programs. Within this cross-disciplinary context, several key themes are evident across the chapters: the African American struggle for and achievement of academic excellence; the imperative for strategic, proactive responses to socially unjust conditions facing many African American students, teachers, parents, and leaders; the imperative for providing counternarratives to deficit perspectives on teaching, learning, leading, and community activism for African Americans; and the imperative to implement policies and practices that include rather than exclude African American children. Finally, the scholarship in this Handbook gives voice to empowering, race-focused research.Organization of the Handbook
The Handbook is divided into six sections followed by an epilogue. Section I of the Handbook presents historical perspectives on the education of African Americans in the United States. The work in this section establishes the context for the political and philosophical struggle for education, as well as the ways in which African American educators were successful in creating and maintaining educational systems that served as a catalyst for future efforts. Historical perspectives on the participation and leadership of African Americans in U.S. education, particularly in the pre-Brown era, is a central topic guiding the content of this section. Adah Ward Randolph examines the history of Black education during the antebellum and postantebellum periods in Columbus, Ohio, while Derrick Alridge discusses the educational ideas of selected African American educators and argues for the place of African American educational thought within the larger African American intellectual tradition. Next, V. P. Franklin provides an extensive account of the educational agendas of African American educators and leaders and their contributions to the African American community. Turning to the education of Black women, Linda Perkins examines how Black women struggled to gain access to postgraduate education, 1921 to 1948. In the last [Page xiii]chapter in this section, Michael Fultz provides a historical perspective of the ascension and decline of Black teacher groups and associations in the 19th and 20th centuries.
The chapters in Section II of the Handbook explore the various dimensions of the participation of Black teachers, Black students, and Black parents in PK-12 education. Teaching and learning are emphasized in these chapters, and authors highlight critical factors that affect teacher competence and the social, emotional, and academic success of African American students. In the first chapter, Peter Murrell offers an alternative to the current discourse on the Black-White achievement gap by looking at social identification, cultural practices, and issues of agency. Next, Yolanda Majors and Sana Ansari focus on classroom community participation structures and consider how African American students’ cultural socialization informs their communication, conflict resolution, and literary skills. The next two chapters focus on teachers and teacher practices. H. Richard Milner provides a review of the literature on curricular, instructional, and policy mandates relative to teacher education and argues for a more proactive approach in teacher education to address racist practices and policies, and Mari Roberts and Jacqueline Jordan Irvine discuss teachers’ culturally relevant caring practices. The section concludes with the work of Cheryl Fields-Smith who reviews the literature on African American parental involvement and argues that African American parents care about and are very much involved in their children's education.
In Section III of the Handbook, the authors are concerned with factors that affect the leadership capacity of African Americans in PK-12 education. Linda C. Tillman reviews the literature on African Americans in the principalship pre- and post-Brown v. Board of Education and posits a framework for Black principal leadership, and Robert Cooper and Will Jordan present findings from a study of African Americans enrolled in an urban leadership preparation program. Turning her attention to Black female principals, Tondra Loder-Jackson adds to the scholarly literature on the advancement and experiences of African American women principals using findings from a life history study of Birmingham, Alabama, educators born during the pre- and post-Civil Rights era. In the last two chapters, Mark Gooden discusses the convergence of race, law, and school leadership, while Kay Lovelace Taylor and Linda C. Tillman present findings from a study of African Americans in the superintendency.
Chapters in Section IV of the Handbook shift to investigations of the status of African Americans in postsecondary education. Eddie Comeaux and Walter Allen address the decline in the admission of students of African descent in the University of California system since 1996. Jon Yasin adds to the growing body of literature on the influence of hip hop culture on education and discusses hip hop culture and higher education. Next, William Smith analyzes the racial climate for African American students on predominantly White campuses, and Kofi Lomotey and Sessi Aboh examine the topic of historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs). In the last chapter, Lynette Danley, Roderic Land, and Kofi Lomotey offer a perspective on African American graduate students who are preparing for careers in academia.
Section V of the Handbook focuses on current issues affecting the participation of African Americans in U.S. education. In the first chapter, Marvin Lynn and Thurman Bridges connect critical race theory to critical race studies in education as a means for discussing the importance of race in the education of African American children. James Moore and Delilah Owens discuss issues that inhibit positive educational outcomes for African American students, focus on the roles of teachers and counselors, and identify factors contributing to underachievement, such as low expectations, negative self-image, social ills, and cultural dissonance. Next, Carol Malloy and Richard Noble present findings from a study of four charter schools and offer some reasons why African American parents choose charter schools over traditional public schools for their children. The last two chapters focus on two critical areas—African Americans in special education and the education of Black males. Gwendolyn Cartledge and Charles Dukes discuss issues affecting African Americans in special education, and James Earl Davis presents common features of African American male culture and analyzes the dissonance between their culture and traditional schooling.
The final section of the Handbook focuses on education policy aimed at improving educational outcomes for African American students. Jennifer Beaumont presents the personal histories of [Page xiv]African American policymakers who have worked to implement policies that benefit African American students and their communities, and Eric Cooper examines the outcomes of a school reform model that uses student strengths as a launching point for movement toward high intellectual performance. Next, Sabrina Hope King and Nancy Cardwell analyze collaborations among a range of stakeholders that are internal and external to public schools in one community. Sheilah Vance provides a legal perspective of the impact of equity in school finance in school districts serving predominantly African American student populations. In the last chapter, Jessica Gordon Nembhard discusses the role of African American Studies Departments in helping college-level students to have a deeper understanding of the economic power within their communities and how to develop entrepreneurial knowledge and skills.
The Handbook concludes with an epilogue by Joyce Elaine King. In this provocative essay King presents a post-Katrina analysis of the state of Black education, and cautions us that in the aftermath of Katrina, African Americans still face many complex challenges in the highly contested educational arena.
The scholarship in this Handbook does not represent the complete range of issues that affect the participation and leadership of African Americans in U.S. education. However, the authors do address important issues that affect African American teachers, students, and administrators in PK-12 and postsecondary institutions. Additionally, they address the role that educational policy plays in shaping the futures of African American students. Yet there is much more work to be done, and future research and policy initiatives must focus on other equally important issues that include providing educational opportunities for African American students in alternative settings (prisons, juvenile detention centers, etc.), investigating the educational environments of the large number of African American children who live in poverty in the South, investigating the educational environments of schools that have been identified as dropout factories, articulating an early-childhood agenda for Black children, and improving access to and graduation rates from postsecondary education. We hope that you will join us in continuing this work.References(1988).The education of Blacks in the South, 1860–1935.Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.http://dx.doi.org/10.5149/uncp/9780807842218Hilliard, A. G., III.(2007, April).Shaping research for global African educational excellence: It is now or never. W. E. B. Du Bois distinguished lecture, Research Focus on Black Education SIG, presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Chicago.Irvine, J. J., & Foster, M. (Eds.). (1996).Growing up African American in Catholic schools.New York: Teachers College Press.(2005).Preface. In J. E. King (Ed.), Black education: A transformative research and action agenda for the new century (pp. xxi-xxx). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.(2005).Beyond the Big House: African American educators on teacher education.New York: Teachers College Press.Lee, C. D. (in press). Profile of an independent Black institution: African-centered education at work. In C. Payne & C. Strickland (Eds.), Teach freedom: The African American tradition of education for liberation.New York: Teachers College Press. Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District No. 1 et al., No. 05–908 (on certiorari to the U. S. Court of Appeals, 9th Cir. June 8, 2007).Tillman, L. C.Culturally sensitive research approaches: An African American perspective. Educational Researcher31(9)3–12. (2002). http://dx.doi.org/10.3102/0013189X031009003Tillman, L. C.African American principals and the legacy ofBrown. Review of Research in Education28101–146. (2004). http://dx.doi.org/10.3102/0091732X028001101Williams, H. A.(2005).African American education in slavery and freedom: Self-taught.Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press
“Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave.”
This book is dedicated to the memory of[Page xvi]
Buck and Caroline Clark
William H. and Carrie L. Nivins Tillman
Eddie L. Tillman
Dennis H. Tillman
Daryl R. Tillman
Raphael A. Fair
Deborah Ann Blue
Richard W. Simmons
Ursel White Lewis
When I first agreed to take on the responsibility of writing an introduction for this Handbook, I had no idea what I was signing on to. When the manuscripts began arriving, I was taken aback by their sheer volume. The sound track that erupted in my mind was an old Sunday School song that starts out, “So high, you can't get over it; so low you can't get under it; so wide you can't get around it; you must come in at the door!” ” However, when I began to think seriously about what the volume was designed to do and its scope, Almost every African American scholar I know who has dedicated his or her career to some aspect of African American life and culture has heard the comment, “Your work is interesting, but it's too narrow.” Indeed, when I worked on my book, Beyond the Big House: African American Educators on Teacher Education (2005) I was able to comb through the transcripts of the participants and unearth this as a theme I entitled, “Your work is too narrow, but really it's too Black!” I find that sentiment of “narrow work” particularly curious in the academy. First, academics are trained to be specialists. To be successful, they must focus their work on very specific and “narrow” domains. I have colleagues in mathematics education who have dedicated their entire careers to studying mathematical functions—not all of mathematics—just mathematical functions. I have colleagues in anthropology who study one traditional community in a rural village in Central America. Neither of these colleagues has had their work described as “too narrow.” Indeed, they are rewarded and acclaimed as “experts” in their fields. So what is it about studying African Americans, and in this case, African American education, that makes it too narrow?
The second part of my thematic assertion—it's too Black—is probably salient to the question posed above. Something about the focus on African Americans makes American culture in the United States very fearful. I would argue that this fear is integrally linked to the complex history and life experiences of African Americans in this society. The very same people who might champion efforts toward “multicultural” education bristle at a focus on African Americans and their education. Clearly, in this introduction I will not have the opportunity to fully unpack and analyze the pathology of race and racism in this culture. However, I will, as a critical race theorist, argue that as long as race matters (West, 1993), blackness and everything associated with it will be opposed and construed as serving special interests.
The first tenet of critical race theory (CRT) is that racism is normal, not aberrant (Delgado & Stefancic, 1999). Although we strive to make negative racial interactions seem abnormal and idiosyncratic, the patterns of Black life indicate that such experiences are a regular part of life in this society. While it is true that certain status characteristics—gender, social class, perceived [Page xviii]academic ability, color, and so on—may mitigate some effects of racism, they cannot fully explain how race functions. For example, an expensively dressed middle-aged African American woman can walk into a department store and have no trouble browsing the store racks and purchasing something. However, that same woman might come in the same store a week later wearing her jeans and a T-shirt. This time, her shopping experience may seem quite different. Instead of receiving good service, she may feel that she is under surveillance or be constantly passed over by the store personnel. Of course, one might argue that the difference in the service was linked to the woman's social class, and it would be difficult to disentangle the effects of race versus class in this instance. However, when Black people regularly accumulate these experiences or what CRT scholars call, “micro-aggressions” (Solorzano, Ceja, & Yosso, 2000), they begin to recognize race, not class, as the common feature of the experience.
In one of my own CRT moments (Ladson-Billings, 1998) I was seated, reading the newspaper in the concierge lounge of a major hotel after having given a “distinguished lecture.” A White gentleman peered into the room and asked, “What time I was going to begin serving?” He could not have made an assessment based on my class because I was dressed in business clothes. However, one might make the argument that he made his assessment based on gender. Again, we can mentally track these incidents and weigh which attribute is at work. A different CRT moment example is a clearer indicator. A colleague who serves as a university provost tells of the time at a professional conference when he was standing in front of a hotel awaiting his automobile from valet parking. While standing there a White man drove up, jumped out, and handed my friend his keys!
So, if race matters in the realm of the mundane, how might it matter specifically in the realm of the educational histories, patterns, and experiences of African Americans? This is one of the insights that this volume provides. That African Americans do have different experiences in and with education is not news to most African Americans. It is news to a broader public that assumes that time and social efforts have either eliminated or alleviated barriers and obstacles of previous years. This volume looks at both macro- and microlevel experiences of African Americans in education. It includes the history, teaching and learning, leaders and leadership, higher education, theory and research, and educational policy. In the latter part of this introduction, I want to address briefly each of these categories that represent the sections of the Handbook.
The history of African American education is, in itself, a huge undertaking. It, like each of these sections, is worthy of a volume all its own. Let me start with a declaration that there has never been a time when African Americans were not involved with education—of themselves and their children. Even in the midst of chattel slavery, African Americans were engaged in education. What education meant to African Americans early on was different from what it meant for White Americans. For African Americans, education was so deeply linked to freedom and life that it became a driving quest for generations from the time of Maafa1 to the modern Civil Rights Movement.2 Despite the threat of death, enslaved Africans found ways to educate themselves. This history includes institution building—from grade schools to colleges, from churches to civic organizations—all designed to share in the education of a people. The history of African American education includes the history of Black teachers and their distinctly different treatment by state and local officials. This history may help us understand the current shortage of Black teachers and the pipeline challenges.
Section II of the Handbook focuses on teaching and learning. I have spent much of my intellectual energy on this topic. Despite the literature's emphasis on generic models of teaching and wholly psychologized notions of learning, research on African American teaching and learning by African American scholars has offered us some new ways of thinking about students, their families, their culture, and pedagogy. This work has challenged the literature of cultural deficiency and disadvantage. Instead of designing interventions to compensate for perceived social, cultural, and intellectual lacks, the work of scholars like Delpit (1996), Foster (1996), Ladson-Billings (1994), Murrell (2001), and others focused on the strengths and resilience of African American students, their families, and communities as well as the insights that many Black teachers might have about these assets.
Section III of this volume looks at leaders and leadership. Our historical and cultural amnesia and myopia have caused us to drop African American leaders from the public consciousness. It is only when we get either heroic isolates or educational intimidators (e.g., Joe Clark of “Lean on Mean” fame) that we see examples of African American leaders. We have forgotten the work of school leaders in the many [Page xix]segregated schools that existed throughout the nation. After some southern schools were forced by court order to desegregate, many African American school leaders were demoted or fired. Scholars in educational leadership raise questions about the kinds of schools and districts African American leaders are hired to lead. Like their counterparts in big cities, many African American school leaders have the experience of being assigned to “broken” systems with the expectation that they will miraculously “fix” them.
Section IV draws our attention to African American higher education. This topic covers everything from our proud legacy of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to our participation in predominantly White institutions (PWIs). Despite economic hardship, limited endowments, and dwindling enrollments, HBCUs continue to serve as an important “port of entry” for many first-generation collegians as well as legacy students. But not all African Americans attend HBCUs. A significant number of the Black college-going population attends PWIs. Once Black students arrive on these campuses, issues of admission and affirmative action, along with campus climate, continue to be an important source of research inquiry. Another component of our thinking about higher education for African Americans concerns the recruitment and retention of African American faculty. At PWIs the small number of African American faculty has a major impact on the success of African American students and their sense of belonging and participation on these campuses. African American faculty members continue to suffer isolation and alienation in their careers. As new faculty, they often lack the mentoring that would lead to tenure and promotion. Additionally, African American faculty members often are discouraged from pursuing research agendas that directly focus on African Americans.
In the next section, the volume focuses on theory and research. Thus, the question of epistemology and methodology is relevant. A huge challenge in African American education research is epistemological. What we know and how we know it remains contested (Ladson-Billings, 2000). African American educational researchers are developing work in frameworks that transcend traditions. Their work may move beyond positivists-functionalists paradigms that reflect the hegemony of dominant discourses and move toward culture-centered perspectives (King, 1995). Thus, the idea that knowing might be affected by race, culture, and social standpoint can have currency in research on African American education. Also, how you actually get at the knowledge imbedded in African American communities presents some exciting possibilities. While traditional work on African American education has relied on the fidelity of extant institutions and their functionaries—schools, community centers, teachers, social workers, police officers—African American researchers may be willing to probe and explore other venues—beauty shops, churches, peer groups, and other informal networks.
In Section VI of the volume, there is a look at the role of African Americans in shaping educational policy. While this may be thought of as a more macrolevel set of questions, we know that policy often starts at microlevels and migrate up to the macro where it influences large numbers of students and shapes thinking. For example, a school principal or group of parents might decide that students should wear school uniforms. Before long, this idea makes its way to the district level, and there is a policy decision that all students must wear school uniforms. Similarly, policy functions in the opposite direction, that is, district, state, or national policies affect the individual classrooms and students. Laws such as the reauthorization of Title I (now known as “No Child Left Behind”) create a set of challenges for individual schools, teachers, or students. Or, debates and decisions about increasing diversity on a college campus (e.g., state propositions, initiatives, and court rulings) have direct impact on the college access and opportunity. Work at this level is important in shaping the contours of education for African Americans.
While I have tried to outline the issues this volume tackles, I saved for the last the bigger challenge of epistemology and essence this work evokes. Vincent Harding (1970) argued that the study of African Americans by African Americans has moved through three distinct and significant phases. The first phase is what Harding terms Negro History. This is an epistemological stance that insisted that African Americans made contributions to the master narrative. Thus, the chronology, periodicity, and perspectives of European Americans remained unchallenged but African Americans made attempts to insert themselves into that history. Negro Historians worked hard to demonstrate that Black people “did it too!” Discussions of the Revolutionary War now were to include Crispus Attucks, James Forten, and Phyllis Wheatley. Discussions of abolition and resistance to slavery were broadened to include Black participation. Civil Rights efforts expanded to include Black initiative.
[Page xx]The second epistemological phase described by Harding (1970) is the Black History phase. Here, Harding argued, Black scholars begin to carve out a separate and distinct history of their experiences to be studied in opposition to the master narrative of American History. This distinct history created its own sense of chronology (where our history begins) and periodicity (what eras and time periods are bounded by which events), and perspectives. Thus, scholars raised questions such as the relationship of African Americans’ story to the dominant story. Were we fighting for freedom just as Whites were fighting for freedom or were we prisoners of war who actually were seeking the kind of reparation that was due to any people in captivity? Were we participating in a “parallel” history, or were we experiencing and creating a separate and distinct history in the midst of oppression? Black History argues for the latter. According to Harding (1970), “Black History suggests that we are the name (that nobody knew); we are the wound (that nobody saw or saw but refused to heal); we are the letters of judgment growing fuller every moment. Black History is an attempt to read them clear” (p. 20).
Harding (1970) further asserted, “Black History cannot help but be politically oriented for it tends toward the total redefinition of an experience which was highly political…. And it recognizes that all histories of peoples participate in politics and are shaped by political and ideological views” (p. 21).
The third phase of the Black intellectual experience is what Harding (1970) described as the “Black Studies” Movement. This epistemic phase argues that history as a discipline is too limited to fully capture the robust nature of the African American experience. Instead, we need to look at, along with history, the literature, art, music, dance, psychology, sociology, philosophy, and anthropology of the Black Experience. Thus, a synthetic new field called Black Studies not only changed the way to approach the experiences of African Americans, it also changed the way scholars in most of the humanities and social sciences thought about their work. This epistemic rupture opened the academy to Women's Studies, Chicano/Latino Studies, Asian American Studies, Native American Studies, and a host of other scholarly disciplines.
Sylvia Wynter (2006) challenged us to see the relationship between the “epistemology of knowledge and the liberation of people” (p. 113). Somewhere in our sojourn here in the Americas we began to think the map (scholarly productivity, academic position, intellectual reputation) was the territory (improved academic achievement, intellectual integrity, liberation). Harding (1970) said,
We should not be terrified by our history, or our future. Instead, we move, becoming participants in the search for a new Black Body, a full body which will receive and give love to all who need it. And in this body we may be granted the grace to become the builders of a new land whose place and shape and time are still unclear. It is nothing we have known here in America. It is nothing we have been promised here. Black History tells us that. But it also tells us that we build, and we begin with an entirely new understanding of ourselves and our surrounding—Black Studies, Black creativity, Black hope. (p. 29)
This volume is an important step in moving us back to the first order of business.Note
1. Maafa is the term used to describe the horror of capture, incarceration, middle passage, seasoning, and slavery that Africans experienced in the Americas. Like the notion of holocaust, it speaks to the specific.
2. I call the period between 1950 and 1970 the modern Civil Rights Movement to underscore the fact that African Americans have always been involved in Civil Rights struggle.ReferencesDelgado, R., & Stefancic, J. (Eds.). (1999).Critical race theory: The cutting edge (2nd ed.).Philadelphia: Temple University Press.(1996).Other peoples’ children: Culture and conflict in the classroom.New York: New Press.[Page xxi](1996).Black teachers on teaching.New York: New Press.(1970).Beyond chaos: Black history and the search for the new land (Black Paper No. 2). Atlanta, GA: Institute of the Black World.(1995).Culture centered knowledge: Black studies, curriculum transformation, and social action. In J. A. Banks & C. M. Banks (Eds.), Handbook of research on multicultural education (pp. 265–290). New York: Macmillan.(1994).The dreamkeepers: Successful teachers of African American children. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.Just what is critical race theory and what's it doing in a nice field like education. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education117–24. (1998). http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/095183998236863(2000).Racialized discourses and ethnic epistemologies. In N. Denzin & Y. Lincoln (Eds.), Handbook of qualitative research (2nd ed., pp. 257–277). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.(2005).Beyond the big house: African American educators on teacher education.New York: Teachers College Press.(2001).The community teacher: A new framework for effective teaching.New York: Teachers College Press.Critical race theory, racial microaggressions, and campus racial climate: The experiences of African American college students.Journal of Negro Education6960–73.(2000)., ,(1993).Race matters.New York: Vintage Books.(2006).On how we mistook the map for the territory, and re-imprisoned ourselves in our unbearable wrongness of being, of désêtre. In L. R. Gordon & J. A. Gordon (Eds.), Not only the master's tools: African American studies in theory and practice (pp. 107–169). Boulder, CO: Paradigm.[Page xxii]Acknowledgments
[Page xxiii]The publication of this Handbook would not have been possible without the support of many individuals. My family has been a constant source of support during this process. I want to especially thank my mother, Susan Tillman Washington, who, during her illness, encouraged me to continue working on the Handbook. I also want to thank the members of my church family who continue to provide me with their unselfish nurturing and support. I am deeply grateful to my ancestors for their legacy of love, commitment, and accomplishment.
The publication of this Handbook was a team effort, and I would like to thank those individuals who assisted me with the details of editing a volume of work of this magnitude, including Jane Gorey. Fenwick English, my colleague at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the members of the editorial board were instrumental in helping me conceptualize the proposal for the Handbook. Many thanks to my editorial team at SAGE Publications, Diane McDaniel, Leah Mori, and Sarah Quesenberry for their guidance and professionalism. A very special thanks to section editors Derrick Alridge, V. P. Franklin, Jacqueline Jordan Irvine, Kofi Lomotey, Gwendolyn Cartledge, and Jennifer Beaumont for all their hard work in identifying authors, reading manuscripts, and offering me advice. Additionally, this endeavor would not have been possible without the efforts of the authors whose work is featured in this volume. They represent a critical mass of African American scholar/leaders whose scholarship will have a lasting impact on the field of educational research and education policy. I would also like to thank those persons who served as external reviewers and offered constructive and important feedback to the authors.
- A. J. Angulo, Winthrop University
- Frank Brown, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
- M. Christopher Brown II, University of Nevada-Las Vegas
- Melanie Carter, Howard University
- Norvella Carter, Texas A&M University
- Colleen A. Clay, York College, City University of New York
- Cheryl Cozart, George Mason University
- Beverly Cross, University of Memphis
- Amanda Datnow, University of California-Los Angeles
- Carla Edlefson, Ashland University
- David Embrick, Loyola University-Chicago
- Maisha Fisher, Emory University
- Lamont Flowers, Clemson University
- Len Foster, Washington State University
- James W. Fraser, New York University
- Fred Frelow, Director, Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation
- Micheal Froning, University of Alabama
- Vivian Gadsen, University of Pennsylvania
- Lin Goodwin Teachers College, Columbia University
- Margaret Grogan, University of Missouri-Columbia
- Paula Groves Price, Washington State University
- Janice E. Hale, Wayne State University [Page xxiv]
- Malik Henfield, University of Iowa
- Richard Hunter, University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign
- Barbara Jackson, Fordham University
- Stephen Jacobson, State University of New York at Buffalo
- Joseph O. Jewel, Texas A&M University
- Barbara Jones, Alabama A&M University
- Cathy Kea, North Carolina A & T University
- Carol Lee, Northwestern University
- Dan Levine, Professor Emeritus, University of Nebraska
- Kristin Lewis, Drexel University
- Kofi Lomotey, Fisk University
- Jerome Morris, University of Georgia
- Marjorie Orellana, University of California-Los Angeles
- Yoon Pak, University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign
- Laurence Parker, University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign
- Diane Pollard, Professor Emeritus, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
- Christopher Span, University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign
- Lee Stiff, North Carolina State University
- David Omotoso Stovall, University of Illinois-Chicago
- Stanley Trent, University of Virginia
- Sherrise Truesdale, Minnesota State University at Mankato
- Gerald White-Davis, Medgar Evers College, City University of New York
- Dwayne Wright, Cleveland State University
- Linda Valli, University of Maryland-College Park
Finally, I would like to thank my colleagues in the American Educational Research Association's Research Focus on Black Education Special Interest Group, the University Council for Educational Administration, and Division A of the American Educational Research Association who encouraged and supported me in this effort. Last, but certainly not the least, I want to acknowledge the support of the Barbara L. Jackson Scholars of the University Council for Educational Administration, who are our next generation of scholar/leaders.—, Ph.D. March 2008
Epilogue: Black Education Post-Katrina: And All Us We are Not Saved1[Page 499][Page 500]
Remember the Kongo saying, “It hurts to lose certain traditions.” The more a society moves away from its traditions, the more its people and system become physically and spiritually weak and disoriented. To lose one's cultural traditional values is not only to terrorize oneself but to ridicule oneself in the eyes of the world.—K. Kia Bunseki Fu-Kiau, Kindezi: The Kongo Art of Babysitting
How can we be successful if we have no idea or, worse, the wrong idea of who we were and, therefore are?… Our minds can be trained for individual career success, but our group morale, the very soul of us has been devastated by the assumption that what has not been told about ourselves does not exist to be told.—Randall Robinson, The Debt
The Maafa gave rise to a single world-wide strategy among our oppressors: prevent African families and communities from educating their children.—The Millions More Movement Education Task Force Report, 20062
Katrina accomplished in a day…what Louisiana school reformers couldn't do after years of trying.—American Enterprise Institute3
All that is public, including schools, is under attack.—Erica Meiners (2007)
The lower classes are worth more to private corporations when they are in prison than when they are free.—Dedon Kemanthi4
This Epilogue asks, What is the state of Black education “post-Katrina”? What is at stake? What is to be done? The dire condition of public education in New Orleans in the aftermath of the 2005 Gulf coast storm serves not as metaphor but as context for framing the complexities of Black education as a civilizational crisis.5 This crisis includes mass Black criminalization and incarceration and the school-to-prison track (e.g., prison industrial complex) as well as the dismantling of public education. What has appeared simply to be the government's abandonment of the most impoverished Black people in New Orleans is a pattern of systematic neglect in jobless urban ghettos across the nation that is better understood as the racialized privatization of public spheres—notably schools and prisons. Moreover, as Meiners (2007) observed, “All that is public is under attack.”
Wynter (2006) argued that fundamentally this is a crisis of knowledge: Western civilization's best minds and academic disciplines are deeply implicated in the belief structure and ways of (not) knowing that systematically jeopardize Black lives. However, this destruction of Black life (“as life unworthy of life”) also diminishes White America's humanity (Rimstead, 2001). And while democracy, human rights, justice, and our planetary environment are at stake, civilization also hangs in the balance (King, 2005). Following are indications of this civilizational knowledge crisis.Beyond Rescue
First, Black people in America have been “beyond rescue” in the nation's schools, cities, and prisons long before Hurricane Katrina—a marginalization that has been justified in part by the neglect and distortion of African descent people's history. The current state of Black education, for example, differs drastically from the historical record of Black accomplishments and educational excellence—from the specialized knowledge of the African ancestors who built the pyramids in ancient Kemet and the Songhay Empire's universities at Sankoré, Gao, and D'jenné in West Africa, to clandestine “slave schools” and African Free Schools in early America, Citizenship schools and Freedom schools during the Civil Rights Movement as well as independent Black institutions (Anderson, 1988; Butchart, 1980; Dannett, 1964; Hilliard, 1997).
Second, “rescue” via prevailing education policy, practice, theory, and research is doubtful if the systemic causes of this racially rooted civilizational crisis are not addressed. Instead, as the crisis is normalized and those who suffer are blamed, the true nature of the crisis is denied, distorted, and hidden in mystification and euphemism. For example, Black people's poverty is the focus of analysis instead of systemic White supremacy/oppression; success and inclusion actually require some form of complicity and self/group abnegation; dismantling public education is called “restructuring” locally and “structural adjustment” globally and “a new national model of a market-based system of education” obfuscates the transfer of public resources into the hands of private entities.
Third, the condition of education in New Orleans and the mass incarceration of African Americans provide interrelated vantage points from which to grasp the relationship between Black education “post-Katrina” and the public good, that is, what is at stake for “all us we.” Tate's (2007) analysis of the need for societal investments in education and employment opportunities—opportunity expansion—for urban youth identifies concrete material benefits that would accrue to the entire society, but which remain unrecognized and “hypothetical” (Belfield & Levin, 2007; Day & Newberger, 2002). Thus, the larger policy context and arena for action must include the knowledge crisis and the need for transformative possibilities that address the systemic connection between education, racialized domination, and real democracy and freedom.Inclusion/Complicity and Negation/Nihilation at What Cost?
Part of what often remains just beyond recognition, understanding, analysis, and action is Black nihilation (or nonbeing) as a requirement of White America's supposed well-being.6 In his description of “White America's sense of self,” for example, Wacquant (2002) captured part of this dialectical interconnection in terms of how social class interacts with race. That is, White America senses itself as “profoundly unlike and [Page 501]distinct from the Black and unworthy poor.” This complex racialized “alter-ego” relationship between “White” being and “Black” negation appears now to be associated with the unworthiness/unfitness of “the Black poor” (in mostly Black “failing schools,” failing “ghetto” cities such as New Orleans, and their “extensions in the prisons”). But it also extends to the entire continent of Africa and is a condition of (the idea/ideal of) “Whiteness” as a privileged mode of being (more human).7
One cost of this privileged (“White”) sense of self is the attenuation of White America's humanity (King, 2006). The benefits of privileged (and “honorary”) “Whiteness” and the associated worthiness of (White) middle-class acceptability lull the rest of us into a false sense of security, success, and well-being:
In every era, Blacks have been viewed as apart, inferior and unworthy, as fringe players in the American narrative. But in the last 35 years the Black communities have been stripped of jobs, seen their poor isolated, resegregated, and redefined as unworthy and inherently dangerous. Government, the state itself has been refashioned into a punitive and carceral machine whose main function is to contain and control this unworthy, dishonored and dangerous poor and black population. (Dixon, 2007, online text)8
“All us we are not saved,” however, if people of African ancestry anywhere remain culturally and spiritually dislocated, economically dispossessed, and politically marginalized by the mythology of race and its economic, cultural, and political inequities/iniquities.
The standpoint, that Black Americans “exist as an African people, an ethnic family,” is not usually considered in prevailing education policy, research, theory, and practice (King, 2005, p. 20).9 Ironically, Black academics and opinion leaders who publicly castigate the (Black) “lower socioeconomic people” (Bill Cosby's phrase) and exhort them to do better and be better tacitly acknowledge Black people's shared identity and community-family connections (Cosby & Poussaint, 2007).10
Yet in the arenas of public policy and education, transformative possibilities that address the racialized roots of our predicament and that build on our collective legacy of democratizing and humanizing public spheres long dominated by White supremacy racism are curtailed. The need for group-based solutions for African Americans is typically unacknowledged, even by the most progressive observers. Certainly, this is the case with respect to the “shocking” and “awful” state of Black education in “post-Katrina” New Orleans, where nihilating academic knowledge has also played a pernicious role.Shocking and Awful: Erasing Public Education in New Orleans
In The Shock Doctrine, award-winning investigative journalist Naomi Klein (2007) documented how governments, following economic strategies devised by the renowned economics professor Milton Friedman and his Chicago School of “fundamentalist capitalism,” have used disasters as a pretext to experiment with drastic “free market” reforms at the expense of the public good. Klein began her analysis of this “disaster capitalism” with the example of the near-total “erasure” of public education in New Orleans and its almost complete replacement by a system of privately run but publicly funded for-profit charter schools in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
In the turmoil and panic of natural and government instigated disasters such as the lack of adequate response to the floodwaters of Hurricane Katrina, various populations have been “shocked” and “awed” into acquiescing to large-scale (and profitable) emergency economic, political, and social “reforms” that are rapidly implemented and then quickly made permanent.
Professor Friedman, also an advisor to presidents (and dictators like Pinochet) and “grand guru of unfettered capitalism” in the “hypermobile” global economy, was an ardent and influential supporter of school vouchers. He advanced the notion that Katrina's devastation in New Orleans represented a fortuitous opportunity. In an op-ed in the New York Times 3 months after the hurricane, Friedman wrote,
Most New Orleans schools are in ruins … as are the homes of the children who have attended them. The children are now scattered all over the country. This is a tragedy. It is also an opportunity to radically reform the educational system. (Klein, 2007, pp. 4-5)
[Page 502]A Nobel laureate, Friedman's ideas have exerted enormous influence on public policy in the United States and the foreign policy elites who studied with him at the University of Chicago. Primarily, he emphasized the “preservation and extension of individual freedom.”11 Klein noted that for Freidman a “state-run school system reeked of socialism.” He passed away on November 16, 2006, less than a year after advancing his proposal for privatizing schooling in New Orleans but not before his scheme was seized by the George W. Bush administration and “a network of right-wing think tanks… that descended upon the city after the storm” (Klein, 2007, p. 5).
Freidman's radical idea was that instead of spending a portion of the billions of dollars in reconstruction on rebuilding and improving New Orleans’ existing public school system, the government should provide families with vouchers, which they could spend at private institutions, many run at a profit, that would be subsidized by the state. (p. 5)
Before the storm, the New Orleans public school system, like other resource-starved urban districts, was chronically ineffective in serving the mostly poor African American students who attended the city's 123 schools. (It is worth noting, however, that White students were relatively well served.)Unfit/Unworthy: Narratives of Blackness
In 2003, in accord with the accountability requirements of the federal No Child Left Behind Act, the Louisiana Department of Education created the “Recovery School District” (RSD) to take over its “failing schools,” which at the time of the storm in 2005 numbered 23.12 As the online Parents’ Guide to Public Schools (2007) in New Orleans states, “The Recovery School District is a state-wide, intermediate school district created by the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to take over and operate failed schools.” These are “low-performing schools that do not meet state-set goals for academic improvement for four or more consecutive years.”13 Within a neoliberal business model, such school “takeovers” are portrayed as rescue and reform to “save” mostly Black and Latino/Latina children from “failing” urban schools. To the extent that this federally prescribed top-down school “restructuring” effectively ends democratic governance in urban schools and communities, these accountability maneuvers mean a loss of liberty for the society. For another example, the teachers’ union contract was dissolved after the storm and all 4,700 professional educators in New Orleans were summarily fired.
After the storm, the number of charter schools, which are mostly managed by the RSD, jumped from 7 to 31. The locally elected New Orleans Public School board currently serves more than 20,000 students. It coexists with this parallel “governance” structure and operates only five public schools but oversees 12 charters operating in buildings that were previously public schools. The “sale” of public lands and property, forced relocation of working class and poor/inner city families, and gentrification are all part of a pattern of economic and political dynamics that are at stake in urban school “reform.”14 Elites have allowed urban schools to atrophy in deteriorating ecological environments, while the lifeblood is drained from their surrounding jobless communities.
However, mismanagement by “unfit,” “incompetent,” and “corrupt” leadership is suggested as justification for the transfer of public wealth to private interests. For example, Ralph Adamo (2006), a New Orleans journalist (who is also a parent), concluded at the end of the second school year since the hurricane (2006-2007) that the “mismanaged and undersupplied” RSD that was responsible for 22 schools and about 9,500 mostly African American students was “nothing as much as a failed experiment.”15 His news report decries privatization running “amok” in New Orleans:
The story of the RSD is, in part, a story of how the idea that public entities (either systems or individuals) that were not fit or competent to run public schools came to dominate the reconfiguration of public education in New Orleans. That narrative was combined, of course, with the narrative that only private, market-driven forces can effectively improve school [Page 503]performance and carry on the tasks of public education. (Adamo, 2006)
However, locals can read a racialized subtext in this narrative. Prior to Hurricane Katrina New Orleans schools served 63,000 students: 93% were African American and 75% were “low-income” (see Note 11). Therefore, “low-performing” (mostly Black) schools are in “New Orleans,” which is also mostly Black, in contrast to “metropolitan New Orleans,” which consists of six other “Whiter” parishes. Thus, a decoded narrative reads,
The idea that public entities where Black people were predominate were not fit or competent to run public schools came to dominate in the reconfiguration of public education in New Orleans.
Similarly unspoken, spatially coded language operates in the racial discourse in other locales. In Atlanta, Georgia, for another example, when some Whites say “the city of Atlanta” or “Fulton County,” they really mean “Black people” as opposed to references to surrounding (“Whiter”) “Gwinnett” or “Henry” counties. (On an airport bus, I overheard one non-Atlanta resident say to another: “Whenever I need documents from the court in Atlanta, I know it's going to be hassle. They are so disorganized, I just go to Gwinnett where I don't have any problem.”) Likewise, “urban” and “inner city” (as compared with “rural”) are erstwhile spatial markers that connote racially coded meanings making them “near-synonymous with black in policy making as well as everyday parlance” (Wacquant, 2002).
In these racialized reconfigurations, the interests of Black middle-class educators and homeowners, as well as White people are expendable “collateral damage” given the larger goal of controlling/relocating/exploiting the dangerous/unworthy/unfit “Black poor,” who frequently occupy prime urban real estate or school property (Tate, 2007). The economics and politics of urban school reform involve discourses and disparities of power that are evident not only in the “achievement gap” but also the wealth gap, the health gap, and the incarceration gap. In fact, Meiners (2007) cited the complicity of educators as a cost of the link between schools, prisons, and the normalization of mass incarceration, that is, the “making of public enemies.”Mass Black Criminalization and Incarceration
Before Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans was like no other American city; even with its “exotic” blend of French, Spanish, African, and Anglo-American cultures, it was acknowledged to be America's “most African city” city as well. In fact, the major contours of the Black Experience in the Americas can be observed in the history of New Orleans, from the depredations of market-driven African enslavement, the deceptions of freedom and Reconstruction, the shortfall of integration, and current Black dispossession from their homes and schools by 21st century “market-driven forces.” New Orleans has been a crucible of Black educational excellence and resistance. However, mass Black criminalization and incarceration—which the Children's Defense Fund has dubbed a “cradle-to-prison pipeline”SM—has eclipsed mass mobilizations for justice. The online Black newspaper http://BlackCommentator.com (2004) observed, “Mass incarceration is by far the greatest crisis facing Black America, ultimately eclipsing all others.”Who Benefits?
Today, almost 2.25 million Americans are incarcerated in local, state, and federal prisons—more than any other nation and more than seven times the international average. African Americans and Latino/Latinas are disastrously overrepresented in this number. As a result of the national policy of mass criminalization and incarceration of Black Americans, liberty and democracy for all are also called into question. Virginia Senator Jim Webb chaired a recent Joint Economic Committee (JEC) of the U.S. Senate hearing on October 4, 2007, that examined this question: “Mass Incarceration in the United States: At What Cost?” Shockingly absent is any societal debate in the nation today concerning what Senator Webb described as “one of the largest public policy experiments” in the nation's history and the “alarming” numbers of incarcerated African Americans. The JEC hearing testimony addressed reasons why[Page 504]
- the incarceration rate has continued to rise despite falling crime rates;
- institutionalization rates have skyrocketed for Black men;
- Black male high school drop-outs have much greater risk of ending up in prison than other demographics;
- the U.S. incarceration rate is the highest in the world; and
- the incarceration rate for Black males remains much higher than other demographic groups.16
Economist Glenn C. Loury's testimony made the racialized interconnection between criminal (in)justice policy and the skyrocketing incarceration of African Americans explicit:
What all this comes to is that, to save “our” middle class kids from the threat of their being engulfed by a drug epidemic that might not have even existed by the time drug incarceration began rapidly rising in the 1980s, we criminalized “our” underclass kids.17Privatization, Profits, and Disparities of Power
A study by Roberts (2004) describes the social impact of this policy on young Black men and their communities:
The extraordinary prison expansion involved young black men in grossly disproportionate numbers. Achieving another historic record, most of the people sentenced to time in prison today are black. On any given day, nearly one-third of black men in their twenties are under the supervision of the criminal justice system—either behind bars, on probation, or on parole … African Americans experience a uniquely astronomical rate of imprisonment, and the social effects of imprisonment are concentrated in their communities. Thus, the transformation of prison policy at the turn of the twenty-first century is most accurately characterized as the mass incarceration of African Americans. (pp. 1271)
While the public and educators are led to focus on the “behavior” of Black youth and to speculate about the deficiencies of Black culture, Wacquant (2002) argued that “Physical isolation of the Black poor enables racially selective policing, prosecution and imprisonment without the need of special laws explicitly targeting blacks.” As Wilder (2000) has also concluded, racism continues in other institutionalized structures:
Social relations can undergo revolutionary change without impacting the power dynamics of the society…. Racism continues to reflect a disparity of power and it is as egregious today as it was in the eighteenth century because the advent of less dramatic forms of dominance is not progress. More insidious in modern social relations is the fact that white people do not have to expressly target black people in order to exploit them. They only have to locate their interests in private and public policies that have disparate impact. Freed from involvement in color-specific political decisions and specific acts of racial oppression, white Americans can more easily imagine the injustices of their society to be natural or irrational. (pp. 240-241)
Therefore, we should not be deceived because segregation is no longer the law of the land. The policy of unprecedented prison proliferation and mass incarceration coalesced in the 1980s with a shift to private for-profit prisons that have replaced state-run institutions—just as private for-profit schools have begun to replace public schools in New Orleans and other urban districts. Similar nonracial but racially coded narratives normalize both.
Private prison corporations are a multibillion dollar business; they are involved with other providers of “health care, phone, food, and other services in correctional facilities” as well as economic development in rural, mostly White communities. These “free market” forces aggressively recruit new prison construction and work “actively to increase the number of citizens being locked up.”18 In a well-documented essay titled “Prison Profit and Slave Labor,” blogger “NdicaBud” examines ways in which privatization is again “encroaching ever further on what had been state responsibilities, and prison systems are the target of private interests.” This analysis, which illustrates how corporations and service-related businesses benefit from the prison industry, is worth quoting at length:
The shift to privatization coalesced in the mid-1980s when three trends converged: The [Page 505]ideological imperatives of the free market; the huge increase in the number of prisoners; and the concomitant increase in imprisonment costs. In the giddy atmosphere of the Reagan years, the argument for the superiority of free enterprise resonated profoundly. Only the fire departments seemed safe, as everything from municipal garbage services to Third World state enterprises went on sale. Proponents of privatized prisons put forward a simple case: The private sector can do it cheaper and more efficiently. This assortment of entrepreneurs, free market ideologues, cash-strapped public officials, and academics promised design and management innovations without reducing costs or sacrificing “quality of service.” In any case, they noted correctly, public sector corrections systems are in a state of chronic failure by any measure, and no other politically or economically feasible solution is on the table.19
Data compiled by the Children's Defense Fund (2007) offers additional insight regarding the interconnection between education “failure” and incarceration:
- Black Americans constitute 13% of the population but half the nation's prisoners.
- Black youth are almost five times as likely to be incarcerated as White youth for drug offenses.
- Government data show Black students face much harsher discipline and are put out of school more often than any other ethnic group for similar offenses.
- Some 70% of Black children are born to single mothers, a major cause of youth delinquency.20
It is also important to note that women are now the fastest growing prison population and many are young mothers with children (Talvi, 2007).Education and Socialization for Cultural Well-Being
The above statistics suggest that the condition of our youth as well as the state of Black education are far removed from the traditional culture of achievement of people of African ancestry. After the defeat of the Songhay Empire in 1591, the European Transatlantic enslavement enterprise interrupted this legacy of educational and cultural excellence. For instance, when it was illegal to teach our ancestors to read, they hid their counterknowledge and societal critique in the words of “sorrow songs” such as “everybody talking ‘bout heaven ain't going there,” songs that document their refusal to acquiesce to the inhumanity and ideology of enslavement.
During Reconstruction, “free people of color” in Louisiana and other Black leaders who had obtained some schooling participated in rewriting state constitutions in the South to provide free public schools for all children (Anderson, 1988). Such educational provisions constituted a watershed in the Black freedom movement that benefited the society as a whole. However, the reestablishment of plantation power with northern complicity meant disenfranchisement, Jim Crow terror, lynching and segregated, unequal education—for nearly a century—but not without continuing resistance that is part of our cultural excellence tradition.
The African American legacy of cultural excellence and resistance to oppression includes the Harlem Renaissance, the Black Arts Movement, the modern Civil Rights Movement, the Ocean Hill-Brownsville community control movement, the Black Studies movement, and the establishment of African-centered schools and curricula, as well as independent Muslim and Christian schools (Lee, Lomotey, & Shujaa, 1991; Lee & Slaughter-Defoe, 2004; Muhammad, 2005), to cite a few examples. It remains to be seen whether the education system's current gambit—school takeovers, high stakes testing, and dismantling public schools with the promotion of vouchers and charters as the only viable alternative to chronically failing schools—will permit Black people to continue to carve out enough “liberated space” for authentic Black education and socialization for our cultural well-being (King, 2008).What Really Happened in New Orleans?
In 1960, four Black girls braved hysterical crowds of “angry white women in pin curlers and toreador pants” during what has been called “the Second Battle of New Orleans”—the [Page 506]100-year struggle to integrate the public schools (Baker, 1996). A Norman Rockwell painting shows one of them, six-year-old Ruby Bridges, walking alone past armed Federal marshals on her way to “integrate” Frantz Elementary School. At another school, McDonough 19, Tessie Prevost, Gaile Etienne, and Leona Tate were also “protected” by Federal marshals. This movement to integrate the schools in New Orleans was a sustained collective action on behalf of the entire Black community-family.
There is no hint of this heritage of collective action and “community capacity” (Roberts, 2004) in the images and news reports that were broadcast in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Rather, the media vilified and dehumanized those who were left stranded in New Orleans in grotesque tales of wanton savagery, supposedly inflicted by young Black males (e.g., raping babies and elderly women). While the authorities later denied the veracity of these widely circulated tales, no one reported why the elderly and mothers with babies were gathered together outside at the front of the Morial Convention Center. Anecdotal “Word” from the community and evacuees, on the other hand, indicates that traditional Black cultural values prevailed during this crisis: The young men gave the elders and women the utmost respect. They organized the people at the Convention Center; they directed the elders and mothers with children to the front so they could be rescued first when the buses they had been told to wait for finally arrived.What Isto Be Done?
Research documents that mass incarceration destroys “social citizenship” (Roberts, 2004). At this time of crisis in Black education and the society, what do students, teachers, and community educators have to know if Black youth are to learn in ways that enable them to care about their communities and to contribute to community-building rather than the pursuit of education only as a one-way ticket out? Post-Katrina Black education challenges include what educators are learning (or not learning) about Black students, about our culture, and about our African heritage, which contributes to educational inequity and policies and practices implicated in the “school-to-prison pipeline” (Dance, 2002; Davis, 2003; Duncan, 2000; Ferguson, 2000; Meiners, 2007).
One possibility discussed in this Handbook, Black economic literacy, can also incorporate Black-community-family consciousness (Gordon Nembhard, 2008). Questions that should inform such literacy include Why are Black communities so poor and why is Africa poor/underdeveloped? What have African people given to the world? How can we restore community capacity and make a living in this era of deindustrialization, other global changes in the economy, and prevailing “market forces”? These are the kinds of questions Black youth (and their teachers) should be able to answer and they should be able to develop solutions for such systemic problems. In teacher education, curriculum development, and community outreach, there is a critical role for Black Studies in addressing the crisis of knowledge that undermines Black educational excellence (Gordon Nembhard & Forstater, in press; Ward & Marable, 2003).
Systemic and historical thinking is rare regarding social issues such as the legacy of slavery, poverty and oppression, African American group identity, consciousness and identification with our African heritage as well as the mechanisms of White supremacy racism. Cosby's widely publicized criticisms (and concern about) poor Black people fail to link the systemic impoverishment of Black communities to the institutionalized privilege and advantages of White-middle-classness. In response, for example, Dyson asks, Is Bill Cosby Right? Or Has the Black Middle Class Lost Its Mind? (Dyson, 2006).21
The failure of public education to serve Black youth is a form of human rights abuse—the 21st century Maafa. While the “terrible consequences” of racialized disparities are life threatening for the Black community-family, they actually call into question the values of the society, including democracy, freedom, and justice for all. Education professionals and policymakers focus on high stakes testing and “teacher quality and accountability” to the exclusion of other possibilities that engage youth in active learning and doing for democratic citizenship (Lipman, 2003; McLaughlin, Irby, & Langman, 2001) and cultural well-being (King, 2008). Lipman's (2003) research links accountability to “racialized social control” and needed community-based strategies [Page 507]for social change. As Lipman argued, “Policy responses are conditioned by the relative strength and mobilization of social forces (e.g., organizations of civil society, working-class organizations, popular social movements)” (p. 12). Our ability to address the challenges of this era depends on opportunities that we create to educate, to socialize, and to mobilize the next generation.
In conclusion, the state of Black education “post-Katrina” challenges us to educate all children, including “other people's children,” to build a world in which “all god's chillun got shoes.” That is to say, our humanity places certain obligations on us—to be responsible for ourselves—for our own spiritual, intellectual, and economic integrity and cultural well-being and to understand how our society really works. The education “reform” that has been engineered in New Orleans faster than the broken levees could be repaired has been lauded in the press as “the nation's preeminent laboratory for the widespread use of charter schools” (Klein, 2007, p. 6). However, public school teachers there have described this massive experiment with the futures of our children as a “land grab” (Klein, 2007, pp. 6-7). After visiting New Orleans recently, the President of the United Federation of Teachers, Randi Weingarten, concluded that “A major part of the reshaping of the city's ethnic face has been played out on the stage of New Orleans public schools.”22
Our obligation is to be proactive especially on behalf of those who suffer. Safeguarding public education would seem to be an important part of that obligation. Saving our children requires both quality education and appropriate community-family socialization. We require creative community-based solutions for this responsibility (King, 2005). For example, the study of African language to access core values and African social practice and organization—before European values intruded—is one possible venue for the recovery of valuable traditions and the reunification of the African family. In Songhoy-senni (language) and classical Songhoy society there was no word for “prison” because other social institutions worked to harmonize society (Maiga, 2007).
In response to mass Black incarceration and criminalization we need a mass movement for educational, social, and economic justice that includes investment in our communities and in people. The future of public education and livable communities is what is at stake for African Americans, the nation, and the world when Black children in a public education system in a major American city become pawns in a massive experiment in “crisis exploitation” to persuade an unsuspecting nation to accept privatized, for-profit rather than public education at our expense.Notes
1. In Trinidad and Jamaica, “all ah we” means “all of us,” so “all ah we” is one. “We are all one people.” Personal communications, Janice B. Fournillier, Annette Henry, and Ashley Hamilton-Taylor, November 10, 2007. In Jamaica, one might also hear: “All ah we no save.” Personal communication, Sylvia Wynter, November 11, 2007. “All us we” incorporates a Black American inflection and includes humanity in general.
2. Marimba Ani introduced this Kiswahili term, Maafa, which means “disaster” or “terrible consequence,” to describe the disconnection, displacement, and dislocation that African people have suffered through 500 years of enslavement, imperialism, colonialism, invasions, and exploitation. See Richards (1989) and Ani (1994).
3. Cited in Klein (2007).
4. “Prison profit and slave labor.” See http://www.yahooka.com/forum/politics-current-affairs/22956-prison-profit-slave-labor.html.
5. The concept “civilizational” is adapted from Munford's (2001) definition of “civilizational historicism”: a system of thought, a philosophy, an explanatory model with a specific purpose-“a world view of use to Black folk” (p. 1).
6. Annihilation and nihilation are related but distinct social processes. Wynter (1989) described the concept of nihilation (from the French word néantisé) as the total negation of being. See also King (2005).
7. Sylvia Wynter (2006) explored the interconnections between our “unbearable wrongness of being,””the epistemology of knowledge,” and the “liberation of people” (p. 113).
8. Dixon summarizes Wacquant's (2002) analysis.
9. This is the first of “Ten Vital Principles of Black Education and Socialization” advanced by the Commission on Research in Black Education established by the American Educational Research Association (http://www.coribe.org).
10. A rash of hate crimes, including events that recently occurred in Jena, Louisiana, have invigorated mass mobilizing-spurred by Black radio commentators who address listeners as “family.”
11. Hoover Institution, Stanford University press release, November 16, 2006, “Milton Friedman noted [Page 508]economist, Nobel laureate, and Hoover senior research fellow, dies at 94.” Retrieved November 9, 2006, from http://www.hooveSr.org/pubaffairs/releases/4667846.html.
12. See Steiner (2005).
13. The Parents’ Guide states, “In New Orleans, the RSD operates 24 schools and oversees 20 charter schools. RSD is run by a superintendent who is appointed by the state Superintendent of Education. An advisory board was established to advise the superintendent on matters pertaining to the RSD.” See http://www.nolaparentsguide.org/Parents'%20Guide%20Aug07.pdf.
14. It can also be argued that the provisions of NCLB permit local and national “effective school” models and charters, including African-centered schools, to provide community-designed, if not controlled, alternatives. The issue of disenfranchisement and dismantling of public education remains, however. The sale of public lands and buildings when school enrollments in deteriorating areas are allowed to drop and threaten public schools’ economic viability is another example. See “Chronology of California School District Takeovers, Youth Strategy Project.” http://www.datacenter.org/research/oaklandtakeover.pdf. “Dismantling a Community” provides a New Orleans privatization timeline. http://www.soros.org/resources/articles_publications/publications/dismantling_20061026/dismantling_20061026.pdf.
15. That parents have chided the new RSD superintendent for using the word “experiment when describing educational conditions in New Orleans (Adamo, 2006), perhaps illustrates the community's understandable sensitivity given the historical legacy of nefarious “experimentation” on Black lives in other contexts. See, for example, the history of medical experimentation documented by Washington (2008).
16. Testimony before the JEC of the U.S. Congress, Washington, D.C., October 4, 2007. See http://jec.senate.gov/Hearings/10.04.07EconomicCostofIncarceration.htm. Data presented included these statistics: Although African Americans constitute 14% of regular drug users, they are 37% of those arrested for drug offenses and 56% of persons in state prisons for drug crimes. African Americans serve nearly as much time in federal prisons for drug offenses as Whites do for violent crimes. A Black male who does not finish high school now has a 60% chance of going to jail. One who has finished high school has a 30% chance.
17. Mass Incarceration and American Values, JEC Testimony, October 4, 2007.
18. See http://www.motherjones.com/news/special_reports/prisons/print_overview.html. See also Blankenship and Yanarell (2004).
20. Children's Defense Fund, reported in Powell (2007).
21. It is worth noting that Dr. Cosby's attention has shifted away from a compelling research, policy, and government agenda that he cogently advanced in his book with Dwight Allen, titled American Schools: The 100 Billion Dollar Challenge, in which he called for a massive federal investment in research. Retrieved June 30, 2001, from http://ipublish.comhttp://www.bn.com.
22. See Weingarten (2007).ReferencesNOLA's Failed Education Experiment: Privatization runs amok in the post-Katrina New Orleans school system. The American Prospect. (2006, August 15). Retrieved October 30, 2007, from http://www.prospect.org/cs/articles?article=nolas_failed_education_experiment_(1988).The education of Blacks in the south, 1860–1935. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.http://dx.doi.org/10.5149/uncp/9780807842218(1994).Yurugu: An African-centered critique of European cultural thought and behavior. Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press.(1996).The second battle of New Orleans: The hundred-year struggle to integrate the schools. New York: HarperCollins.(2007, August).The economic losses from high school dropouts in California (Policy Brief 1). Santa Barbara: California Dropout Research Project, University of California at Santa Barbara Gevirtz Graduate School of Education., &http://BlackCommentator.com.(2004, June 17).Mass incarceration and rape: The savaging of Black America. No. 95. http://www.blackcommentator.com/95/95_cover_prisons.htmlPrison recruitment as a policy tool of local economic development: A critical evaluation.Contemporary Justice Review7(2)183–198. (2004, June).http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/1028258042000221184,(1980).Northern schools, Southern Blacks, and Reconstruction: Freedmen's education, 1862–1875. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.Children's Defense Fund.(2007).America's cradle to prison pipeline. Washington, DC: Author.(2007).Come on people: On the path from victims to victors. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson., &(2002).Tough fronts: The impact of street culture on schooling. New York: Routledge/Falmer.(1964).Profile of Negro womanhood. Negro Heritage Library. Vol. I 1619–1900. Yonkers, NY: Educational Heritage.(2003).Are prisons obsolete?New York: Seven Stories Press.[Page 509](2002, July).The big payoff: Educational attainment and synthetic estimates of work-life earnings (Population Division No. P23–210). Washington, DC: U. S. Census Bureau., &Dixon, B.(2007, October 13).Black mass incarceration is now a political issue. Dissident. Retrieved November 1, 2007, from http://www.dissidentvoice.org/2007/10/black-mass-incarceration-isnow-a-political-issueDuncan, G. A.Urban pedagogues and the celling of adolescents of color. Social Justice: A Journal of Crime, Conflict, and World Order2729–42. (2000).Dyson, M. E.(2006).Is Bill Cosby right? Or has the Black middle class lost its mind?New York: Basic Civitas Books.Ferguson, A. A.(2000).Bad boys: Public schools in the making of Black masculinity. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.Gordon Nembhard, J.Alternative economics, a missing component in the African American studies curriculum: Teaching public policy and democratic community economics to Black students. Journal of Black Studies38(2008). (doi: 10.1177/0021934707310294).Gordon Nembhard, J., Forstater, M. (in press). Guest editors.Special Issue: Black political economy in the 21st century: Exploring the interface of economics and Black studies.Journal of Black Studies38.Hilliard, A. G.(1997).SBA: Reawakening the African mind. Gainesville, FL: Makare Press.King, J.(2008).Critical and qualitative research in teacher education: A blues epistemology for cultural well-being and reason for knowing. In M. Cochran-Smith, S. Feiman-Nemser, & J. McIntyre (Ed.), Handbook of research on teacher education: Enduring questions in changing contexts, (3rd ed., pp. 1094–1136). New York: Routledge.King, J. E. (Ed). (2005).Black education: A transformative research and action agenda for the new century. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.(2007).The shock doctrine: The rise of disaster capitalism. New York: Henry Holt.How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land? The dilemma of double consciousness and the complexities of African centered pedagogy.Journal of Education172(2)45–61. (1991)., ,(2003).High stakes education: Inequality, globalization, and urban school reform. New York: Routledge.(2007).La contribution socio-culturelle du people Songhoy en Afrique. Algiers, Algeria: Magreb Press.(2001).Urban sanctuaries: Neighborhood organizations in the lives and futures of inner-city youth. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass., , &(2007).Right to be hostile: Schools, prisons, and the making of public enemies. New York: Routledge.(2005).Faith and courage to educate our own: Reflections on Islamic schools in the African American community. In J. E. King (Ed.), Black education: A transformative research and action agenda for the new century (pp. 261–280). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.(2001).Race and civilization: Rebirth of Black centrality. Trenton, NJ: Red Sea Press.Parents’ guide to public schools.(2007). Retrieved November 1, 2007, from http://www.nolaparentsguide.org/Parents'%20Guide%20Aug07.pdfPrioritizing education over the penal system. Diverse11. (2007, November 1).(1989).Let the circle be un-broken: The implications of African spirituality in the Diaspora. Trenton, NJ: Red Sea Press.(2001).Remnants of nation: On poverty narratives by women. Toronto, Ontario, Canada: University of Toronto Press.The social and moral costs of mass incarceration in African American communities. Stanford Law Review56(5)1271–1305. (2004).(2005).School restructuring options under no child left behind: What works when: State takeovers of individual schools. Washington, DC: Center for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement. Retrieved November 1, 2007, from http://www.centerforcsri.org/pubs/restructuring/KnowledgeIssues1StateTakeovers.pdfIncarceration nation. The Nation. (2007). Retrieved November 1, 2007, from http://www.thenation.com/doc/20070122/incarceration_nation(2007, October).Knowledge workers and the need for opportunity expansion regimes in urban America. Brief Report prepared for the National Education Association. Washington, DC: Author.From slavery to mass incarceration: Rethinking the “race question” in the US. New Left Review1341–60. (2002).Toward a new civic leadership: The Africana Criminal Justice Project.Social Justice30(2)89–97. (2003).,(2008).Medical apartheid: The dark history of medical experimentation on Black Americans from colonial times to the present. New York: Harlem Moon Press.[Page 510](2007, August 27).New Orleans and the future of American Education. Retrieved November 1, 2007, from http://edwize.org/neworleans-and-the-future-of-american-education(2000).A covenant with color: Race and social power in Brooklyn. New York: Columbia University Press.Beyond the word of man: Glissant and the new discourse of the Antilles. World Literature Today63(4)637–647. (1989, May). http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/40145557(2006).On how we mistook the map for the territory and re-imprisoned ourselves in our unbearable Wrongness of Being, of Désêtre: Black Studies toward the Human Project. In L. Gordon & A. Gordon (Eds.), Not only the master's tools: African-American Studies in theory and practice (pp. 107–169). Boulder, CO: Paradigm.[Page 511]Appendix: Graduate School Programs to Prepare Future Faculty of Color, , and
Following is a list of various programs and contacts that have played and continue to be an integral part in the process of preparing future faculty of color and strengthening the pipeline. Attached to each program is a brief description of the contribution/service they provide as well as a link to the Web site where more information is available. The maintenance and success of these programs are vital to the growth of a “seemingly diminutive” pipeline of “qualified” applicants of color.The Western Name Exchange
The Western Name Exchange is a consortium of 24 universities located in the western and southwestern United States, which annually collects and exchanges names of talented under-represented ethnic minority students who are in their junior or senior year of their undergraduate education. The purpose of the Exchange is to ensure that participating universities continue to identify a pool of qualified students who could be recruited to the graduate programs at these “name-exchanging” institutions. The consortium of universities conducts other activities consistent with the national efforts to increase the enrollment of traditionally under-represented peoples in graduate education.
John P. Drew
University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195
e-mail: email@example.comRonald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program
This program prepares participants for doctoral studies through involvement in research and other scholarly activities. Participants are from disadvantaged backgrounds and have demonstrated strong academic potential. Institutions work closely with participants as they complete their undergraduate requirements. Institutions encourage participants to enroll in graduate programs and then track their progress through to the successful completion of [Page 512]advanced degrees. The goal is to increase the attainment of Ph.D. degrees by students from under-represented segments of society.
Federal TRIO Programs
U.S. Department of Education, OPE
Higher Education Programs
1990 K Street, N.W., Suite 7000
Washington, DC 20006-8510
Tel.: (202) 502-7600
Fax: (202) 502-7857 or (202) 219-7074Summer Research Opportunity Program (SROP)
This is a program to expose talented undergraduates to professional and educational opportunities in the academy. The goal of the program is to increase the number of underrepresented students who pursue academic careers by enhancing their preparation for graduate study through intensive research experiences with faculty mentors. The SROP was initiated in 1986 by the CIC Graduate Deans to encourage talented undergraduate students to pursue graduate study and subsequently academic careers. That first year 99 students participated; 529 students majoring in more than 100 fields of study are participating this year. Since this program began, some 7,000 students have participated. The major activity of the SROP is an in-depth research experience with students working one-on-one with faculty mentors. SROP students are required to write a paper and an abstract describing their projects and to present the results of their work at a campus symposium.
Assistant Director for Graduate Education and Diversity Committee on Institutional Cooperation
08K Bricker Hall
190 North Oval Mall
Columbus, OH 43210-1366
Tel.: (614) 247-5068
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.orgUndergraduate Research Opportunity Program
The Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) creates research partnerships between first- and second-year students and University of Michigan faculty. All schools and colleges of the University of Michigan are active participants in UROP, thereby providing a wealth of research topics from which a student can choose. Begun in 1989 with 14 student/faculty partnerships the program continues to grow, offering more first- and second-year students the opportunity to be part of an exciting research community. Today, approximately 900 students and more than 600 faculty researchers are engaged in research partnerships.
Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program
University of Michigan
1190 Undergraduate Science Building
204 Washtenaw Avenue
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2215Preparing Future Faculty
The Preparing Future Faculty (PFF) program is a national movement to transform the way aspiring faculty members are prepared for their careers. PFF programs provide doctoral students, as well [Page 513]as some master's and postdoctoral students, with opportunities to observe and experience faculty responsibilities at a variety of academic institutions with varying missions, diverse student bodies, and different expectations for faculty. The PFF initiative was launched in 1993 as a partnership between the Council of Graduate Schools and the Association of American Colleges and Universities. During a decade of grant activity, from 1993 to 2003, PFF evolved into four distinct program phases, with support from the Pew Charitable Trusts, the National Science Foundation, and the Atlantic Philanthropies. During this time, PFF programs were implemented at more than 45 doctoral degree-granting institutions and nearly 300 “partner” institutions in the United States. While the grant periods have expired, the Council of Graduate Schools continues to provide administrative support to existing programs and to those wishing to develop new PFF programs. Since the PFF initiative began, a number of institutions and programs have developed PFF programs without external funding. These programs incorporate many or all the activities and components of grant-funded programs, and have been significant contributors to the PFF community.
Council of Graduate Schools
One Dupont Circle, N.W.
Washington, DC 20036-1173 Tel.: (202) 223-3791 Fax: (202) 331-7157
e-mail: email@example.comWashington State University (WSU) Summer Doctoral Fellows Program
This program provides select doctoral students with the opportunity to work closely with faculty mentors at WSU in preparing for academic careers as future faculty members. During the program, research fellows work on completing dissertations; engage in seminars on the changing roles and expectations of faculty, the future of the professoriate, the changing nature of higher education, and the issues facing faculty of color and women; and design individualized programs for enhancing their ability to teach, conduct research, and other scholarship.
Dr. Howard Grimes
Dean of the Graduate School
c/o Joe Merrill
P.O. Box 641030
Washington State University
Pullman, WA 99164-1030
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.orgInstitute for the Recruitment of Teachers
The Institute for Recruitment of Teachers aims to reduce over time the critical underrepresentation on the faculties of certain minority groups, as well as to address the attendant educational consequences of these disparities. Providing positive role models to youth, the institute serves the related goals of supporting school and campus environments.
Each year, the institute supports throughout the graduate school application process outstanding college students and graduates from diverse backgrounds who are committed to these ideals.
Institute for Recruitment of Teachers
180 Main Street
Andover, MA 01810
e-mail: email@example.com[Page 514]Sisters of the Academy Research Boot Camp
As Sisters of the Academy, our mission is to create a network of Black women in higher education committed to fostering continuous scholarship and academic achievement. Through this commitment, members of the organization will reinforce the idea of excellence in access to higher education for Black people, schools, and communities. The Research Boot Camp is an intense, 1-week program designed to assist doctoral students and junior faculty members in the development of skills necessary for success in the academy. Senior scholars, statisticians, and theorists will facilitate workshops intended to help doctoral students conceptualize and design key components of their dissertations including: Research Question and hypothesis development, Literature Review, Conceptual Framework development, Instrumentation, Methodology, and Data analysis. These senior scholars will also assist junior scholars in the development of manuscripts for publication and clarification of a future research agenda. In addition to the research component, each participant will be linked with a mentor, either a junior or senior scholar, to help cultivate a mentoring relationship.
Sisters of the Academy Institute
4036 Haley Center
Auburn, AL 36849-5221
Tel.: (334) 844-3087
Fax: (334) 844-3072 fax
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.orgFlorida A&M Graduate School Feeder Program
The Graduate Feeder Scholars Program (GFSP) in the School of Graduate Studies and Research is an official partnership agreement arranged by Florida A&M University (FAMU) with more than 40 participating universities located throughout the United States. The GFSP affords FAMU students the opportunity to receive advanced study in graduate programs not available at FAMU. The feeder arrangement was conceptualized and created in response to the national need to increase the number of African Americans participating in advanced graduate education. The GFSP was designed with FAMU as the lead university in this consortium. As the lead institution, FAMU acts as the hub of the consortium with a committed role of providing a pool of qualified African American students motivated to pursue the master's or Ph.D. degree.
School of Graduate Studies & Research
Florida A&M University
400 Tucker Hall
Tallahassee, FL 32307
Tel.: (850) 599-3505Ford Foundation Diversity Fellowships for Achieving Excellence in College and University Teaching
This program is designed to increase the diversity of the nation's college and university faculties by increasing their ethnic and racial diversity, to maximize the educational benefits of diversity, and to increase the number of professors who can and will use diversity as a resource for enriching the education of all students. Predoctoral fellowships support study toward a Ph.D. or Sc.D.; dissertation fellowships offer support in the final year of writing the Ph.D. or Sc.D. thesis; postdoctoral fellowships offer 1-year awards for Ph.D. recipients. Applicants must be U.S. citizens in research-based fields of study.
Policy and Global Affairs
500 Fifth St., NW
Washington, DC 20001
Tel.: (202) 334-2425
About the Editor[Page 549]
Linda C. Tillman is professor and program coordinator in the Educational Leadership Program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is Vice President of Division A (Administration, Organization, and Leadership) of the American Educational Research Association and Associate Director of Graduate Student Development for the University Council for Educational Administration. She has teaching and administrative experience in an urban school district and has held faculty positions at the University of New Orleans (Louisiana) and Wayne State University (Michigan). Her research interests include leadership theory; the education of all children, particularly African Americans in K-12 and postsecondary education; mentoring African American teachers, administrators, and faculty; and the use of racially and culturally sensitive qualitative research approaches. Based on her article Culturally Sensitive Research Approaches: An African American Perspective, she uses a culturally sensitive research framework to investigate factors that affect African Americans in K-12 and higher education. Recent publications include Boston Public as Public Pedagogy (with James Trier) in the Peabody Journal of Education. She was also the guest editor of special issues of The International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, titled Research on the Color Line: Perspectives on Race, Culture and Qualitative Research and Educational Administration Quarterly, titled Pushing Back Resistance: African American Perspectives on School Leadership. She is also the co-editor (with Lenoar Foster) of a forthcoming book titled African American Perspectives on Schools: Building a Culture of Empowerment. She is the 2004 recipient of the Early Career Contribution Award from the American Educational Research Association Committee on Scholars of Color in Education.[Page 550]
About the Section Editors[Page 551]
Derrick P. Alridge is director and associate professor in the Institute for African American Studies and Associate Professor of Education at the University of Georgia. He is the author of W. E. B. Du Bois: An Intellectual History. He is currently writing The Hip Hop Mind: An Intellectual History of the Social Consciousness of a Generation.
Jennifer Beaumont works in the Office of Innovative Programs, New Jersey Department of Education. Her responsibilities include coordinating Advanced Placement programs across the state, supporting school districts in the use of Federal Title V funds, and developing special programs that deepen the awareness and understanding of equity and diversity issues. She also assists state departments of education, local education agencies, and individual schools in the formulation of policy and the development of strategies for implementing comprehensive changes in schools. Her research interests include the political and policy context of educational leadership and education in urban settings. She has taught in the New York City public schools and at the University of Buffalo.
Gwendolyn Cartledge, Ph.D., is a professor at The Ohio State University (OSU), School of Physical Activity and Educational Services, special education programs. She documents an extensive teaching career in both the public schools and higher education. A faculty member at OSU since 1986, her professional teaching, research, and writings have centered on students with mild disabilities, the development of social skills, and early intervention and prevention of learning and behavior problems through effective instruction. Currently, her research and writing interests have concentrated on early reading intervention with a particular emphasis on urban and culturally/linguistically diverse learners. She has coauthored four books: Teaching Social Skills to Children and Youth (1995, 3rd ed.), Cultural Diversity and Social Skills Teaching: Understanding Ethnic and Gender Differences (1996), Teaching Urban Learners (2006), and Diverse Learners With Exceptionalities: Culturally Responsive Teaching in the Inclusive Classroom (2008). She has also coauthored two social skills curricula and numerous articles in professional journals.
V. P. Franklin, Ph.D., holds a University of California Presidential Chair and is Distinguished Professor of history and education at the University of California, Riverside. He also serves as Editor of The Journal of African American History (formerly The Journal of Negro History). He is the author of numerous articles and books on African American history and education, including The Education of Black Philadelphia (1979), Black Self-Determination: A Cultural History of African American Resistance (1984, 1992), and Living Our Stories, Telling Our Truths: Autobiography and the Making of the African American Intellectual Tradition (1995); and is the coeditor of New Perspectives on Black Educational History (1978), Sisters in the Struggle: African American Women in the Civil Rights-Black Power Movement (2001), Cultural Capital and Black Education: Black Communities and the Finding of Black Schooling, 1860 to the Present (2004), and other works.
Jacqueline Jordan Irvine is the Charles Howard Candler Professor Emeritus in the Division of Educational Studies at Emory University and visiting professor at the University of Maryland [Page 552]College Park. Her specialization is in multicultural education and urban teacher education, particularly the education of African Americans. Her books include, Black Students and School Failure, Growing Up African American in Catholic Schools, Critical Knowledge for Diverse Students, Culturally Responsive Lesson Planning for Elementary and Middle Grades, In Search of Wholeness: African American Teachers and Their Culturally Specific Pedagogy, and Seeing With the Cultural Eye. In addition to these books, she has published numerous articles and book chapters and presented hundreds of papers to professional education and community organizations. Some of her awards and recognitions include American Educational Research Association (AERA)'s Outstanding Achievement Award—Research Focus on Black Education (RFBE) SIG; Distinguished Career Award from Committee on the Role and Status of Minorities; Dewitt-Wallace/AERA Lecture Award; President's Distinguished Service Award from the SIG: RFBE; AERA Social Justice Award; Division G's award for Outstanding Service in the Preparation of the Next Generation. The American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education has recognized her work with the Outstanding Writing Award; Hunt Lecture; and the Lindsay Award for Distinguished Research in Teacher Education. Emory University noted her accomplishments with The Distinguished Emory University Faculty Lecture and Award; Thomas Jefferson Award, an award given at Commencement to a faculty for their contributions in research and service; and Emory University's Crystal Apple Award for Excellence in Teaching Graduate Education. Finally, she was elected to the National Academy of Education in 2007. She received her B.A. and M.A. degrees from Howard University and her Ph.D. from Georgia State University in educational leadership.
Kofi Lomotey is presently the executive vice president and provost at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee. He has published several books, articles in professional journals, and book chapters. His research interests include urban schools, students of African descent in higher education, principals of African descent in elementary schools, and independent African-centered schools. He serves as Editor of Urban Education, and of the SAGE Encyclopedia of African American Education. He has served as President of Fort Valley State University, Senior Vice President, Provost, and Professor of Education at Medgar Evers College (City University of New York) and as a member of the faculties at Louisiana State University and the State University of New York (Buffalo).
About the Contributors[Page 553]
Sessi S. F. Aboh is assistant provost at Fisk University. Before joining Fisk University, she served as an assistant professor and the Associate Director of the African World Studies Institute (AWSI) at Fort Valley State University. She formerly served as the Associate Director of the Center for Diopian Inquiry of Research on Education as Culture Transmission (DIRECT Center) at Medgar Evers College of the City University of New York. She is the Managing Editor for the Journal of Culture and its Transmission in the African World (JCTAW), a reviewer for the Urban Education, and a reviewer and editorial board member for the Journal of Negro Education (JNE).
Walter R. Allen is Allan Murray Cartter Professor in Higher Education, Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is also professor of sociology and codirector of CHOICES, a longitudinal study of college attendance among African Americans and Latinos in California. His research interests include higher education, race and ethnicity, family patterns, and social inequality. He has worked as a consultant to courts, communities, foundations, business, and government.
Sana Ansari is currently completing her Ph.D. in curriculum studies at the University of Illinois, Chicago. Her professional experience began as a high school teacher. Consequently, as a researcher, her area of inquiry is secondary literacy and urban education with a focus on adolescent identity development. She is currently examining the ways in which institutions shape identity within urban school contexts through the lens of critical race theory, postcolonial theory, and identity theory.
Thurman L. Bridges III is a doctoral student in the Minority & Urban Education Unit at the University of Maryland, College Park, in the College of Education. He worked as a classroom teacher for 4 years in Richmond, Virginia. As a doctoral student, his areas of concentration are in urban education, Black male teacher beliefs, social and ecological contexts of urban schools, critical race theory, and emancipatory pedagogies. More specifically, his work will examine which factors (extrinsic and intrinsic) influence the motivation, beliefs, and persistence of post-Civil Rights Era African American male teachers in urban public schools. With this work, he hopes to influence the admissions and hiring practices of colleges of education and school districts as they work to recruit and retain African American male classroom teachers in urban public schools. He plans to pursue an assistant professor position at a research institution upon graduation.
Nancy M. Cardwell is a member of the graduate faculty at Bank Street College of Education where she teaches child development, research methods, and foundations of educational leadership. She is the recipient of a multiyear Spencer Foundation Discipline Based Studies in Education grant to critically examine social development through the prism of social justice. Her research, informed by 20 years of graduate-level study and teaching experience in higher education and in central Harlem public elementary schools, has focused on identity development in cultural contexts, narrative teaching practices, as well as issues of race, gender, and power in urban public schools. Her dissertation will examine novice teachers’ beliefs about child development theory and how these beliefs shape classroom practice.
[Page 554]Eddie Comeaux is currently a lecturer at the University of California, Los Angeles. His research interests include the sociology of education, critical race theory, college access issues regarding underrepresented minorities, and critical pedagogical strategies that translate into personal and academic intervention for underrepresented minorities and college student athletes. The meta-objective of his research has been to examine the ways in which the interaction patterns between personal characteristics (e.g., race/ethnic and culture) and characteristics of the social environment influence subsequent educational experiences and outcomes.
Eric J. Cooper is the President of the National Urban Alliance for Effective Education (NUA). His extensive career in education policy includes vice president for Inservice Training & Telecommunications, Simon & Schuster Education Group; associate director of Program Development, The College Board; administrative assistant, Office of Curriculum, Boston Public Schools; researcher; and advocate. As a MacArthur Foundation Fellow, he received a $500,000 award to produce prime-time documentaries and training programs for television, on improving the literacy skills of students. He is currently working with the University of Alabama/Birmingham to improve education in the Birmingham Public Schools and led the “Eleanor & Brown” project partnership that commemorates the Brown v. the Board of Education decision while viewing education not just as a civil right but as a human justice right. He received the 2008 Martin Luther King, Jr. award from the Israeli Consulate of New York City and the Jewish National Fund. He maintains an irrefutable belief in the capacity of all school children and youth to succeed at the highest academic levels.
Robert Cooper is an assistant professor at the University of California-Los Angeles. He conducts research on the implementation and scale up of school reform models. His research focuses on the politics and policies of school reform, particularly as they relate to issues of race and equity for African American and Latino students. Specializing in the use of a mixed methods approach, he has published and presented numerous papers on the varying aspects of school reform and school change, including recent articles in Urban Education, Journal of Negro Education, Education and Urban Society, and Journal of Education for Students Placed at Risk.
Lynette L. Danley is an assistant professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy and Ethnic Studies Program at the University of Utah. Her research interests include college preparation, mentoring, and erosions in the PK-20 pipeline that impede the academic and social mobility for women and people of color in higher education, particularly Black women who are university faculty members, undergraduate and graduate students, and girls who identify as Black/African American high school students. As she investigates strategies for successful navigation of the academy and the PK-12 educational systems, her current scholarship applies critical race feminism epistemologies and methodological approaches by using story telling, narratives, and counter stories to shed light on how the intersections of race, class, and gender shape the diverse experiences of their lives. She is a native of Chicago, Illinois, first-generation college student, and a product of the Chicago Public School System. She is the proud mother of an 8-year-old son, Julian, and the founder of Black Butterflies, a college preparation program that empowers Black girls to live their legacy.
James Earl Davis is professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at Temple University with affiliate appointments in African American Studies and Women Studies. His research focuses on the academic and social experiences of African American boys and young men placed at risk for underachievement and school disengagement. His work has appeared in numerous journals, including Gender & Society, Urban Education, American Journal of Evaluation, and Educational Researcher. He is coauthor of African American Males in School and Society: Policies and Practices for Effective Education (with Vernon Polite) and Black Sons to Mothers: Compliments, Critiques, and Challenges for Cultural Workers in Education (with M. Christopher Brown). He has taught at the University of Delaware and Cornell University. His work has been funded by the Spencer Foundation, the National Science Foundation, Marcus Foundation, and the U.S. Center for Substance Abuse Prevention.
[Page 555]Charles Dukes is an assistant professor in the Department of Exceptional Student Education at Florida Atlantic University. His research interests include positive behavioral support, inclusive education for individuals with significant disabilities in high schools, sexuality, and cultural issues for individuals with disabilities.
Cheryl Fields-Smith is currently a member of the faculty in the Department of Elementary and Social Studies Education at the University of Georgia. Her research agenda focuses on the areas of African American parental participation and issues of diversity in teacher education. In March 2006, she was awarded a Spencer Foundation research grant to conduct a 2-year study of home schooling among African American families. She earned her master's degree in elementary education from the University of Bridgeport and taught elementary school in Connecticut Public Schools. Before she began her public school teaching career, she received her B.A. in economics from Hampton University and worked for Xerox Corporation in Stamford, Connecticut. She received her doctorate from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.
Michael Fultz is Professor and Chair of the Department of Educational Policy Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he teaches courses in the history of American education, the history of African American education, and urban education. His research interests focus on the history of African American teachers in the South and the organizational infrastructure African Americans developed from the post-Civil War period through the 1960s. He holds master's and doctoral degrees from Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Mark A. Gooden is an associate professor in the departments of Educational Leadership and Urban Educational Leadership (UEL) and Director of the UEL program. His research interests include educational technology and its use by administrators; legal issues related to the connection between the Internet, students’ rights, and school violence; and issues in urban educational leadership. He taught mathematics and served as the Departmental Chairperson at the high school and middle school levels in the Columbus Public Schools district. His most recent publications appear in Education and Urban Society, School Business Affairs, Education Law Association Case Citations 2002: Violence and Safety, The Journal of Negro Education, and Educational Administration Quarterly. He served as one of the editors for the Education Law Association's Principal Legal Handbook and also completed a chapter for that volume on legal issues associated with students’ use of technology and the Internet.
Jessica Gordon Nembhard is an assistant professor and economist in the African American Studies Department, and cofounder of The Democracy Collaborative at the University of Maryland, College Park. Her research focuses on community- and asset-based economic development and democratic community economics, cooperative economics and worker ownership, alternative urban economic and educational development strategies, racial wealth inequality and wealth accumulation in communities of color, and popular economic literacy. Her recent publications include “Cooperatives and Wealth Accumulation,” in the American Economic Review; “Non Traditional Analyses of Cooperative Economic Impacts,” in the Review of International Co-Operation; and “On the Road to Democratic Economic Participation: Educating African American Youth in the Post-Industrial Global Economy,” in Black Education: A Transformative Research and Action Agenda for the New Century. She and Ngina Chiteji are editors of Wealth Accumulation and Communities of Color: Current Issues (2006). She was a visiting scholar and senior urban fellow of the Annenberg Institue for School Reform at Brown University. She is the recipient of a Henry C. Welcome Fellowship Grant from the Maryland Higher Education Commission. She has been a member of the Black Enterprise Board of Economists since October 1999.
Will J. Jordan is an associate professor of educational leadership and policy studies at Temple University. His scholarly interests, informed by his background in sociology of education, include school reform, educational policy, and social stratification in school and society. His work focuses on empirical research to broaden understandings of educational inequality and, [Page 556]more practically, to enhance program and policy development for improving the overall quality and conditions of education. With an emphasis on urban schools, his works are aimed at fostering social justice. He has conducted impact evaluation research, which employs experimental design (randomized control trials) and quasi-experimental designs. Prior to joining the faculty at Temple University, he was a senior analyst at The CNA Corporation, a Washington-based, research and consulting firm, and was Research Scientist and Associate Director of the Center for Social Organization of Schools at Johns Hopkins University.
Joyce Elaine King holds the Benjamin E. Mays Endowed Chair for Urban Teaching, Learning and Leadership at Georgia State University where she is also Professor of educational policy studies. She is recognized in the United States and abroad for her contributions to the field of education. Her publications include four books—Preparing Teachers for Diversity, Teaching Diverse Populations, Black Mothers to Sons: Juxtaposing African American Literature With Social Practice, and Black Education: A Transformative Research and Action Agenda for the New Century. Numerous other publications also address the role of cultural knowledge in effective teaching and teacher preparation, Black teachers’ emancipatory pedagogy, Black Studies epistemology and curriculum change. One of her most recent publications is, “If Justice Is Our Objective”: Diaspora Literacy, Heritage Knowledge, and the Praxis of Critical Studyin’ in the National Society for the Study of Education Yearbook. In 2001, she founded the Academy for Diaspora Literacy to enable educators and families to use community cultural resources and heritage knowledge to support excellence in education. She is the coeditor of the top-ranked journal, the Review of Educational Research.
Sabrina Hope King has devoted her career to improving the educational opportunities and outcomes of those students who are most in need of an excellent education. She spent the first 9 years of her career in the field of urban education as a teacher of ESL and high school equivalency (GED), and as a high school history teacher and dean in the New York City Public School System. For the next 9 years, she was on the curriculum and teaching faculty at University of Illinois at Chicago and Hofstra University. She has also worked as an assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction and a senior program officer at the Wallace Foundation where she comanaged a national educational leadership policy and practice initiative. A strong understanding of urban school leadership, diversity, culturally relevant practice, and educational equity inform her practice and scholarship. She now directs the Leadership Preparation Institute at Bank Street College where she is able to use all her experiences and expertise in the service of improved school leadership preparation and practice.
Gloria Ladson-Billings is the Kellner Family Chair of Urban Education in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction and Faculty Affiliate in the Department of Educational Policy Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is a member of the National Academy of Education and a former president of the American Educational Research Association.
Roderic R. Land is an assistant professor in the Department of Education, Culture, & Society and the Ethnic Studies Program at the University of Utah.
Tondra L. Loder-Jackson is currently an assistant professor in the educational foundations program in the School of Education at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Her credentials and training are grounded in interdisciplinary programs of education, human development, and urban policy. Her research and teaching interests include urban education, life course perspectives on education, intergenerational life histories of educators, and the influence of U.S. social movements on education, especially the Birmingham Civil Rights Movement. She is the principal investigator of a Spencer Foundation-funded study examining the salience of activism among Birmingham educators born pre- and post-Civil Rights Movement. As an inaugural member of the UAB Commission on the Status of Women, she chairs the Campus Climate & Environment and Child Care committees.
Marvin Lynn is associate professor and director of Elementary Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He was previously Associate Professor and Founder/Director of the [Page 557]Minority & Urban Education Program at the University of Maryland, College Park. He an emerging leader in the area of studies he identifies as Critical Race Studies in Education. He has published articles in Teachers College Record, Qualitative Studies in Education, and Review of Research in Education. He also serves on the editorial boards of several education journals. Prior to coming to the university, he taught in public and private elementary schools in New York City (Harlem) and Chicago.
Yolanda J. Majors is an assistant professor of curriculum design in the College of Education, University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), where she focuses her research on adult/adolescent literacy, curriculum instruction, and multicultural education. She has been with the University since 2004. Prior to joining the faculty at UIC, she was assistant professor of language education at the University of Georgia (2001-2003).
Carol E. Malloy is associate professor in mathematics education in the School of Education at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her major research interests are mathematics learning, the influence of culture on the cognitive development of African American students as it relates to mathematics learning, and teacher/student interactions that lead to achievement and understanding in mathematics. She and two other colleagues have just completed data collection for a major 3-year study, funded by the National Science Foundation, investigating students’ development as mathematical learners in reform-oriented classrooms. She has research experience related to school reform, including the capacity and successes of the Comer School Development Program and an investigation of two charter schools.
H. Richard Milner IV is the Betts Associate Professor of Education and Human Development in the Department of Teaching and Learning at Peabody College of Vanderbilt University. In 2006, he was awarded the Scholars of Color in Education Early Career Contribution Award of the American Educational Research Association. His research, teaching, and policy interests are (a) urban education, (b) race and equity in education, and (c) teacher education. He is the coeditor (with E. W. Ross) of the book, Race, Ethnicity, and Education: The Influences of Racial and Ethnic Identity in Education. His research has appeared in numerous refereed journals including Educational Researcher; Journal of Negro Education; Urban Education; Education and Urban Society; Teaching and Teacher Education; Race, Ethnicity and Education; and Curriculum Inquiry. He earned the M.A. and Ph.D. from The Ohio State University in Educational Policy and Leadership and the B.A. (in English) and M.A. (in the Teaching of English) from South Carolina State University.
James L. Moore III is an associate professor in counselor education in the College of Education and Human Ecology and coordinator of the school counseling program at The Ohio State University (OSU). He also has a faculty appointment at the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity and is the inaugural director of the Todd Anthony Bell National Resource Center on the African American Male at OSU. He has made significant contributions in the fields of (a) school counseling, (b) urban education, (c) gifted education, and (d) multicultural education. On these broad topical areas, he has published more than 70 publications. Additionally, he has received numerous professional honors and awards, such as the Academic Key's Who's Who in Education (2003), Brothers of the Academy's National Junior Scholar Award (2003), OSU College of Education's Distinguished Scholar Award (2004), Ohio School Counselor Association's Research Award (2004), North Central Association for Counselor Education and Supervision's Research Award (2004), Ohio School Counseling Association's George E. Hill Counselor Educators Award (2005), American Education Research Association's Early Career Award in Counseling-Division E Award (2005), North Central Association for Counselor Education and Supervision's Deanna Hawes Outstanding Mentor Award (2005), Manchester Who's Who Among Professionals in Counseling and Development (2005), Counselors for Social Justice's Ohana Award (2006), and Phi Delta Kappa International's Emerging Leader Award (2007) and American Education Research Association's Distinguished Scholar Award in Counseling—Division E (2008).
[Page 558]Peter C. Murrell Jr. is the Founding Dean of the School of Education at Loyola College in Maryland. Prior to that he served as professor of urban education at Northeastern University in Boston, director of its Center for Innovation in Urban Education, and as chair of the Education Department. As a steering committee member of the Institute on Race and Justice, Dr. Murrell was a 2006 corecipient of the University Aspiration Award for extraordinary contributions in social justice and diversity in education. He has taught graduate and undergraduate courses in cognitive learning theory, educational psychology, instructional theory, and the sociocultural contexts of teaching and learning. Dr. Murrell's research focuses upon the development academic identity and racial identity as a joint process of learner achievement and teacher effectiveness. He has authored numerous articles and book chapters on a number of areas in urban education. He is the author of several books, including The Community Teacher: A New Framework for Effective Urban Teaching, African Centered Pedagogy: Developing Schools of Achievement for African American Children, and Like Stone Soup: The Role of the Professional Development School in the Renewal of Urban Schools. His most recent book addresses this dynamic of identity, learning and teaching: Race, Culture and Schooling: Identities of Achievement in Multicultural Urban Schools.
Richard Noble III is a doctoral student in the School of Education at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is also a high school mathematics teacher. For the past years, he has taught mathematics (ranging from algebra to calculus) at several colleges and universities and two high schools. Through these experiences, he has seen a need for enhanced pedagogical techniques and enhanced educational techniques to fully develop all students, but specifically African American males. The focus of his research interests is identifying some of the factors that assist African American males to successfully perform in collegiate level mathematics courses. He is interested in developing a program that would assist Black males in successfully completing their collegiate program.
Delila Owens, L.P.C., is an assistant professor in counselor education in the College of Education, Theoretical and Behavioral Foundations Division at Wayne State University. She currently serves on the Michigan Board of Counseling and is president-elect of North Central Associations of Counselor Educators and Supervisors. Her research interests focus on urban school counseling, schooling practices of students of color (particularly urban African American girls), and the career development of underserved populations.
Linda M. Perkins is University Associate Professor and Director of Applied Women's Studies at the Claremont Graduate University. She holds an interdisciplinary university appointment in the departments of Applied Women's Studies, Educational Studies and History. Perkins is a historian of women's and African American higher education. Her primary areas of research are the history of African American women's higher education, the education of African Americans in elite institutions, and the history of talent identification programs for African Americans students. She has served as Fellow and Assistant Director of the Mary Ingraham Bunting Institute of Radcliffe College (1979-1983) and on the faculties of Women's Studies Programs at Barnard College, Hunter College, and the William Paterson College of New Jersey.
Mari Ann Roberts, a former high school English teacher, is a doctoral student in the Division of Educational Studies at Emory University. Her research interests include multicultural education, African American secondary teachers and students, and teacher care. Her current work, African American Secondary Teachers and Their Definitions of Care for African American Students, examines teacher care by applying care theory and critical race epistemologies and methodological approaches to African American high school teacher narratives and counter stories.
William A. Smith is an associate professor in the Department of Education, Culture & Society and the Ethnic Studies Program at the University of Utah. In July 2007, he accepted two administrative appointments as the Associate Dean for Diversity, Access, & Equity in the College of Education as well as the Special Assistant to the President & Faculty Athletics Representative. He has held administrative and faculty positions at Eastern Illinois University, Governors State [Page 559]University in University Park, Illinois, Western Illinois University, and, in 1997, he was awarded a 2-year postdoctoral fellowship with the Center for Urban Educational Research and Development at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Since his arrival in Salt Lake City in 1999, he published his highly regarded coedited book (Philip Altbach and Kofi Lomotey), The Racial Crisis in American Higher Education: The Continuing Challenges for the 21st Century (2002). In 2003, he was awarded the Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Research Fellowship to further develop his theoretical concept of Racial Battle Fatigue.
Kay Lovelace Taylor is president of KLT & Associates. She has served as Executive Director for Professional Development for Detroit Public Schools; Associate Superintendent for Philadelphia Public Schools; and Associate Professor in the College of Education at Temple University in Philadelphia. She is president of the board of directors for the George Washington Carver Museum and serves on the national advisory boards for Michigan State University’ College of Education and “The Learning Classroom” presented by Mort Crim Communications and Stanford University. She is a founding member of the National Staff Development Council's Coaching for Results. She is the author of Through Their Eyes: A Strategic Response to the National Achievement Gap and has received numerous awards for her work on behalf of African American children.
Sheilah D. Vance, Esquire, is executive director of the Institute for Educational Equity and Opportunity in Washington, D.C., a research, education, and training organization that focuses on K-12 public school finance issues, and she maintains a private law practice in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She is an adjunct professor at Villanova University School of Law, where she teaches education law. She has published and presented extensively in the areas of public education and legal education. She has a J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center and a B.A. in communications, magna cum laude, from Howard University.
Adah Ward Randolph is associate professor and program coordinator of the Educational Research and Evaluation Program in the Department of Educational Studies at Ohio University. Her research has been published in Urban Education, the Journal of African American History, Howard University http://Archives.net, and Journal of Critical Inquiry Into Curriculum and Instruction. Her research has primarily focused on the late-19th and early-20th century educational experiences and contributions of African American teachers and principals, particularly in the urban North and South and rural North. She is currently on the editorial board for the History of Education Quarterly. She recently received a Spencer Grant to support her research on the life of Ethel Thompson Overby, the first African American woman principal in Richmond, Virginia.
Jon A. Yasin is professor of English, linguistics, and religion at Bergen Community College in Paramus, New Jersey. He taught linguistics for 8 years at the University of the United Arab Emirates in Abu Dhabi. In addition, he was invited by Teachers Across Borders to organize seminars and to lecture at Yangoon University in Myanmaar (Burma) and Pannasastras University in Phenom Penn, Cambodia. He was also the director of Le Centre du Amimation Rurale in N'Gabou, Senegal, for 2 years. On hearing Hip Hop emcees in 1979, he equated their performances with the indigenous griots in Senegal and other countries in West Africa. He has published various articles on emceeing and other styles of talk in African American music, on using Hip Hop to educate millennial students, and on Hip Hop culture.