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The Culturally Proficient School

The Culturally Proficient School
An Implementation Guide for School Leaders

Other Titles in:
Diversity | Leadership

192 pages | Corwin
This book provides the practical strategies, tools, and resources school leaders need to fully implement cultural proficiency throughout the organization. Cultural Proficiency enables educators to value diversity, honour it with integrity, and preserve the cultural dignity of their students. Failing this places many of our students at risk of being excluded from the benefits and opportunities of being well educated. Culturally Proficient leaders embrace diversity and respond to it in ways that acknowledge and esteem cultural differences while simultaneously valuing and supporting similarities. Cultural Proficiency enables educators the knowledge and understanding of how to interact effectively with people in their environment who differ from them. Educators have a choice-they can either contribute to the academic achievement gap or challenge and change the conditions that support the inequities that created and perpetuate the gap. This book offers leadership strategies that are sensitive to how and why some children and youth fail in our schools and why others succeed. The authors also address accountability and data-based decision making.

The five principles of cultural proficiency are:

} culture is a predominant force in people's lives

} the dominant culture serves people in varying degrees

} people have both personal identities and group identities

} diversity within cultures is vast and significant

} each individual and each group has unique cultural values and needs.


Features and benefits:

} reflective activities for individuals or groups

} examples of typical conversations that arise around the issues of diversity, multiculturalism, equity, entitlement, and racism

} typical behaviors associated with culturally proficient leadership organized around the responsibilities of school leaders

} a rich and detailed case study of a fictionalized school district interwoven throughout the book, providing opportunities for discussion and reflection

} professional development activities.

by Flora Ida Ortiz
About the Author
Part I: Cultural Proficiency and the Achievement Gap
1. Why is Culturally Proficient Leadership Important?
Part II: The Tools of Cultural Proficiency
2. What Does Cultural Proficiency Look Like in Practice? The Guiding Principles
3. The Inside-Out Process to Becoming Culturally Proficient: The Cultural Proficiency Continuum
4. Standards for Leadership Behavior: The Five Essential Elements
5. Overcoming Self-Imposed Barriers to Moral Leadership
Part III: Professional Development for Organizational Change
6. The Art and Science of Conversation: A Crucial Skill for the Culturally Competent Leader
7. Leading in a Culture of Learning And Transformative Change
Resource: List of Maple View Case Study Characters

"The blend of theory with practical exercises, including reflective activities, allows this book to have a profound impact on the thinking and professional behavior of current and prospective educational leaders."

Michael Dantley, Associate Professor of Educational Leadership
Miami University

"If our schools are to be successful, leaders, teachers and parents need improved cultural proficiency. This book clearly will help all these stakeholders serve children better."

Kent Peterson, Department of Educational Administration
University of Wisconsin-Madison

The authors adeptly address the complex issue of cultural proficiency through an easily read but provocatively examined analysis that should be required reading for those responsible for transforming schools and districts into inclusive organizations that powerfully and honestly serve the educational needs of all students.

Karen M. Dyer, Manager of Education and Non-Profict Sectors
Center for Creative Leadership

The distrust between people of different races, religions, and cultures today seems sadly elevated, rather than diminished. This is why the call by Lindsey, Roberts, and CampbellJones for cultural proficiency in schools is so critical. I commend these authors for making an invaluable contribution to that pursuit.

Glen H. Harvey, Chief Executive Officer

"Thanks to our author-colleagues for providing us with the practical steps to question our assumptions and examine our daily practices. It is through these means that we can move past the teaching of tolerance to the higher moral obligation of embracing diversity."

Michele Lawrence, Superintendent
Berkeley Unified School District, CA

This book makes an important contribution to the resources available to school leaders in addressing some of the most fundamental and critical issues in education today.

Stephanie Hirsh, Deputy Executive Director
National Staff Development Council

I simply could not put this book down--a substantive and compelling guide to living life to improve the human condition. Finally, a book that inspires transformation on all levels beginning with self.

Kristine Kiefer Hipp, Associate Professor
Cardinal Stritch University

Finally, a book that provides a safe construct to dialogue and deals with barriers to learning, (i.e. racism, sexism, etc.).

General Davie, Jr., Superintendent
San Juan Unified School District, Carmichael, CA

This is a resource that can be used to develop a quality professional development opportunity. Understanding hidden biases is crtical to achieving cultural proficiency in the educational setting.

Mary Henson, Curriculum Specialist Consultant
Michigan Education Association

This book expands the personal transformation journey needed for cultural proficiency to the broader school organization, and emphasizes the skills that should be demonstrated in leadership, instructional. and behavioral practices.

Joan Mapson, Director, Professional Development/Human Rights
Michigan Education Association

Randall B. Lindsey

Randall B. Lindsey is Emeritus Professor at California State University, Los Angeles. He has served as a teacher, an administrator, executive director of a non-profit corporation, as Interim Dean at California Lutheran University, as Distinguished Educator in Residence at Pepperdine University, and as Chair of the Education Department at the University of Redlands. Prior to that he served for seventeen years at California State University, Los Angeles in the Division of Administration and Counseling. All of Randy’s experiences have been in working with diverse populations and his area of study is the behavior of white people in... More About Author

Laraine Marie Roberts

Laraine M. Roberts, EdD, is Senior Research Associate at WestEd in San Francisco. Her work centers on educational leadership, organizational culture, and school and district development and im-provement. In addition to leading educational research projects, she designs and facilitates leadership development programs for superintendents, district administrators, and school principals. In all her work, her goal is to influence changes within the structures of schools and the practices of educators that result in meaningful learning experiences and academic success for all students. Her experiences as an educator include classroom teaching,... More About Author

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