Various factors implicate why teachers decide to leave the profession. Of the factors measured in exit surveys, and other qualitative studies, the lack of administrative support, and dissatisfaction with working conditions are highly credited as contributing to teacher attrition(Carver-Thomas, 2017). These factors of teacher attrition are extremely pertinent to the materialization of decreased possibilities for low-income students, and students of color. According to a national 2012 Schools and Staffing Survey, turnover rates are 70% higher for teachers who serve students in schools that have large concentrations of students of color (Carver-Thomas, 2017). This capstone is a meta-analysis of research efforts that support why improvements to teacher preparation programs can increase the commitment of teachers to urban schools.
To better prepare professionals who may not have the cultural indicators that align with those of their students, it is recommended that higher education institutions infuse a culturally responsive framework into their teacher education programs and leverage the knowledge of community members by building community partnerships to inform their program development. Recommendations for how universities can accomplish this are: recruit and select faculty with a history of experience in urban education and/or faculty from diverse educational backgrounds, identify a school district partner and community organizations with who to develop an intentional partnership, develop culturally responsive pedagogical courses that can be offered to aspiring teachers as early as freshman year.
1.1 Teacher retention as a national issue
Teacher recruitment and retention have grown into a systemic challenge that is perpetuating the student achievement gap. National research from the Learning Policy Institute sthared that from a sample size of observed school districts, 90% of the nation's teacher vacancies are created as a result of teachers resigning (Carver-Thomas, 2017). Teacher attrition rates used to equate to 5.1% of teachers leaving annually in the 1990's. These rates have now nearly doubled, and hover anywhere from 8-11% of teachers leaving schools annually according to this same study(Carver-Thomas, 2017). Teachers are a critical factor in upholding education as a positive externality. Specifically, Title I schools which service low-income students and receive federal funds under Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, have teacher turnover rates that are 50% higher than non Title I schools (Carver-Thomas, 2017). Providing education as a public service to all children is jeopardized if teachers are leaving classrooms in urban and low-income schools at increasing rates.
Focusing on school funding, improving social justice reform, and creating spaces for holistic child development all play a critical role in improving student achievement rates. Given that these challenges arise from systemic injustices, their resolve may require legislative investment. For a more immediate and largely impactful solution, teacher quality and preparation should be addressed. Studies have shown that teachers who have cultural synchronicity with their students have fewer challenges with engaging with their students and are more inclined to return to work each day (Farinde-Wu, 2018).
One relationship that has been studied as having a more immediate impact on teacher retention , is the inclusion of comprehensive culturally responsive instruction in the framework of a teacher preparation program. Universities play a role in developing a competent and committed teacher workforce. The intentionality of a program's coursework, coupled with the practical experience students receive in their student teaching assignments has the potential to equip students to adequately perform in high-poverty schools (Freedman, 2009). A limitation to making culturally responsive programs a catch all solution to teacher retention challenges is that not all universities are in proximity of high-poverty schools. Also, the bureaucratic nature of some universities may prohibit teacher preparation programs from innovating their practices in an expeditious manner that is keeping up with the demands of society.
2.1 Teacher Attrition
According to a 2008 study, the turnover rate of teachers in large urban schools was over 21% (Singer, Catapano, Huisman, 2010). New hires in urban classrooms are leaving the classroom at faster rates, with 20% leaving within three years, and 50% leaving within 5 years (Singer et al., 2010). Another significant statistic collected from a 2003 study, shares that 25% of the nation's teachers leave the classroom after one year, and almost half leave within 5 years (Freedman, Appleman, 2009). Compared to other employment industries, the national turnover rates in education are noticeably higher. National job turnover in education industry typically equates to about 16%, while the national job turnover rate overall is 11% (Singer et al., 2010). While various factors compound to influence a teacher's decision to leave, some of the primary factors that have been identified across multiple studies are a lack of administrative support, limited resources, lack of mentoring, poorly maintained facilities, and low pay (Singer et al., 2010).
Data from a 2008 study confirms how costly replacing teachers can be, and further validates why investment in more comprehensive teacher preparation programs may save districts money. In this study, five urban school districts that experienced high teacher turnover were analyzed. This study shared that the cost of replacing a resigning teacher in large urban districts is approximately $50,000 (Barnes, Crowe, & Schaefer, 2008). More specifically, the average cost of replacing one teacher in Chicago public schools was $17,872, and the annual cost was $86 million (Barnes, Crowe, & Schaefer, 2008). This cost factors in the money needed for the recruitment, hiring, and training of a replacement teacher. As show in Table 1, the utilization of taxpayer money to replenish the teacher workforce is a significant public service concern. The funding used to replace school personnel could be allocated to other critical budgetary items such as school improvement projects, or professional developments for teachers who have committed to remain in schools. The frequent transition of teachers, also has negative impacts on the academic and social outcomes of students. In a multi-state analysis of 7,000 schools, that collected responses from 270,000 teachers, it was deduced that teacher turnover was higher in schools where the students were identified as low-performing (Barnes, Crowe, & Schaefer, 2008).
2.2 The Implications of Homogeneity and Lack of Cultural Synchronicity
According to 2011 data, approximately 84% of the teaching workforce was white, while 46% of the K-12 student population were students of color (Waddell, Ukpokodu, 2012). It is expected that by 2050, a majority of the students in US schools will be students of color (Waddell, Ukpokodu, 2012). In pre-service programs, there are high rates of ethno-centric power struggles between pre-service teachers and their minority students. By not understanding the plights faced by students of color and students in urban communities, educators enter these spaces with misconceptions, that may interfere with their ability to service high-need students. Research suggests that effective pre-service programs have the quality of immersing students in adjacent experiences, outside of those that are a required component of their teacher preparation program (Ingersoll, Merrill, May, 2012). Examples of these immersive experiences include walks throughout the service community, attendance to town hall meetings, and discussion on social justice issues.
Cultural synchronicity plays a significant part in attracting teachers to urban schools. A 2018 study found that black female teachers felt a personal connection to urban school environments (Farinde-Wu, 2018). As such, these teachers were able to foster deeper relationships and influence positive student behavior. Instead of viewing student's behavior as problematic, these teachers were able to view behavior through a cultural lens. Data from a survey of Black female teachers in the southeastern region of the US, reported that these teachers viewed their students behavior through a cultural lens, which enabled them to interpret behaviors commonly associated with disruptions such as yelling or talking incessantly, as positive cultural expressions (Farinde-Wu, 2018). Respondents also found serving in urban districts as purposeful, and a primary reason for why they return to work on a daily basis. For educators who do not have cultural synchronicity with students, a disposition to cultural awareness, and an understanding of the implications of community, family, and societal factors on student's performance in the classroom, can make them more responsive educational leaders.
While cultural synchronicity is important to finding candidates who may feel comfortable in an urban classroom, the over-utilization of this as an indicator for qualified teachers in urban spaces, can lead to the disproportionate assignment of teachers of color to high-need classrooms. For instance, according to records from 2015, 43% of New York's public school students are males of color, while only 8.3% of the teacher workforces are made up of men of color (Haynes, Forbes, Chism, Harris, 2016). Interviews and performance assessments of male teachers of color uncovered that although male teachers of color were inspired by a desire to impact change through instruction, they were often steered into disciplinarian roles. This delegation of the disciplinarian role, among other factors, fuels the increasing rates of turnover that are observed within the male teacher of color community. Teachers of color are two to three times more likely than white teachers to be selected to serve in high-poverty, multicultural, and urban communities (Ingersoll, Merrill, May, 2012). Unfortunately, the stereotypes that fuel the placement of teachers of color in high-poverty and urban communities can eventually lead to educator burnout.
2.3 Examples of Culturally Responsive/Immersive Practices
Universities have developed partnerships with school districts in order to cultivate relationships, diversify teaching staff, and to increase the level of preparedness of incoming teachers. Some recommendations to diversify school staff include implementing culturally affirming curriculum, promoting hiring practices that consider the demographics of the district's students, encouraging ongoing cultural competency professional developments for teachers, and upholding equitable school funding and student access to resources. So that student teachers do not fall into deficit views of their students, it is important to expose them to experiences that present a holistic viewpoint of marginalized communities (Cross, 2016). Students should reflect on their own ideologies while in the field, by getting to know their students and families in deep ways.
In 2003, 6 universities in Ohio, partnered with the Ohio City Schools Superintendent to launch a Higher Education Partnership with the goal of decreasing the student achievement gap by providing specialized urban teacher preparation (Fayne, Matthews, 2010). This specialized teacher preparation program was funded through the Teacher Quality Enhancement funds under the U.S. Office of Education. A component of the course was the Introduction to Urban Education course that was co-taught by middle school teachers from the public schools and a teacher educator from one of the higher ed. Institutions.
So that students are able to learn about other cultural backgrounds, they were engaged in direct experiences in urban settings. These experiences included walks through the neighborhoods surrounding schools, or interviews with residents in their school community. Prior to these immersive experiences, students were required to complete readings on the histories of disenfranchised communities, so as to raise their overall awareness (Fayne, Matthews, 2010)). The Introduction to Urban Education course was received over a 10-week period. During this period, students received instruction on topics such as democratic issues, social justice, curriculum and instruction, and legal/organizational issues. The students also listened to panels that consisted of public school administrators, teachers, and officials who shared updates on their progress in the six theme areas.
Results from a survey gathered on student satisfaction after the completion of a semester in a grant funded Urban Teacher Preparation program (UTP), showed that higher rates of students indicated an interest in teaching in urban settings after completion of the program (Lee, Eckrich, Lackey, Showalter, 2010). The UTP program was launched between the partnership of a local public university, community-based organizations, businesses, community colleges, and non-profit educational organizations. The goals of this program were to encounter how student identities shape their understandings, and to immerse students in first-hand experiences that are accompanied with theoretical discussions. Course syllabi were redeveloped to incorporate culturally responsive pedagogy and authentic assessments that would measure the needs of urban teachers and students. The result of this exposure to cultural pedagogy and reflection practices was not only an increased interest in serving in urban schools, but also more positive perceptions on urban education, and positive attitudes towards diversity and multiculturalism (Lee et al, 2010).
Teacher education programs that balance curricula and clinical experience are found to be more effective, in that learning experiences are more closely aligned to reality. To attract students to teacher preparation programs, it is good practice to clearly articulate the programs goals and to articulate a philosophy that will be essential to attracting students who are predisposed to be successful in the program. Establishing a comprehensive equity-minded program and leveraging buy-in from community stakeholders, is an effective strategy for preparing pre-service teachers of varying demographics.
2.4 Value of Culturally Responsive/Immersive Practices
Student behavior is subjective when viewed through a cultural lens. As such the behavior of minority student may be misinterpreted when viewed according to Eurocentric cultural norms. Introspection and having a clear sense of identity is important for educators, as it increases their mindfulness. Introspection is a critical skill to develop, if serving in a space where an inequality is being perpetuated. To deepen understandings of the plights faced by individuals in urban communities and to heighten commitment to urban education, various studies have recommended that preservice teachers immerse themselves in adjacent cultural experiences, outside of those that are a required component of their teacher preparation program. This has largely been accomplished through collaborative learning environments between the university teacher preparation program, and the community.
A 2005 study found that pre-service teachers who engaged in volunteer experience, or had previous experience in working with low-income children, tended to respond to experiences in the program with a greater level of cultural responsivity (Whipp, Geronime, 2017). White students who had limited exposure to urban experiences indicated a decreased commitment to teaching in urban schools by the end of the program. Results from this study indicate that urban experience in and out of a teacher preparation program may indicate an inclination towards a commitment to urban education. Also, results showed that candidates who have experiences working in high-poverty communicates are more likely to teach in high-poverty urban schools.
3.1 Vygotsky's sociocultural theory as a method to teacher instruction
Vygotsky's Sociocultural theory implies that a teacher's identity is developed across time by way of interaction between the self and communities of practice. An individual's identity changes as their experiences within a community changes. Preservice teachers are encouraged to reflect on their identity and how this interplays with the identify of their students and the social constructs in which their students operate (Freedman, Appleman, 2008).
In relation to professional development, the sociocultural theory concludes that knowledge is developed through social interaction. Learning is viewed as a process that entails the application of a skill, the internalization of that skill application, and consequently the cognitive transformation that occurs from the practice of the skill (Shabani, 2016). While other learning theories present similar learning concepts, Vygotsky's theory takes development a step further by implying that the transformation of social behavior is a lengthy process that requires the engagement of multiple actors in a practical activity (Shabani, 2016). This theory is especially critical for young people or anyone who is in the student position, because the ideologies and meaning systems that they incur determine how they positions themselves in the world.
Within the framework of the sociocultural theory, it is perceived that a teachers decision to teach in a particular setting, is influenced by the patterns of cultural experiences they have undertaken. If a teacher has tutored in urban schools, is a minority, or works for an organization that services non-white people, they may be more likely to teach in an urban setting (Whipp et al., 2017). When in a new experience, pre-service teachers typically try to transplant their meaning on the experience, rather than to engage in the environment through the lens of the students or community members who occupied that space prior. The study of the sociocultural theory implies that for social interactions to lead to development, it is required that they are constructed in a deliberate manner, that clear goals are created between the learner and teacher, and that problem-solving is a joint endeavor (Lee et al., 2010).
Vygotsky's theory can be utilized to push teacher educators a step further by advancing the notion of knowledge acquisition from that of student teachers learning in a passive manner, to student teachers engaging more fully in the learning process. An example of an engaging learning model is mentoring (Shabani, 2016). Through mentoring, an experienced professional interacts with a learner to provide assistance in learning opportunities by introducing and guiding the novice through these developments. By engaging in this method of cooperative learning, both individuals are exposed to the benefits of transformational learning. A second method of engaging learning is the joining of study groups for the purpose of inquiry action. Through inquiry action, individuals participate in concrete social activities that are embedded in intentional activities for the purpose of reaching higher social development. This understanding of the sociocultural theory provides the underpinnings of a training framework that can be essential to influencing cultural sensitivity.
4.1 Research Question
The aim of this research is to uncover the risks of placing underprepared novice teachers in high-poverty schools, and to explore leveraging university resources as a strategy for equipping teachers to meet outcomes in a given role. This research will explore the effectiveness of higher education programs that incorporate culturally responsive learning models in their program framework. Higher education institutions that have incorporated these models and have noticed positive outcomes will be referenced. Some of the strategies from these programs will be utilized for the purpose of developing a checklist that teacher preparation programs can reference when incorporating more culturally responsive practices.
The research question that will guide my journey to the research aim is, “How can the inclusion of a culturally responsive framework in teacher preparation programs increase teacher investment in low-income or urban schools?” This question is critical to the study of teacher retention in that it highlights the significant contributions that teachers make to the learning space, and creates dialogue around the ways to improve teacher performance by way of intrinsic motivation and professional development. Replacing teachers prior to their retirement can be a costly endeavor. Districts who face perpetual staffing challenges, spend incomprehensible amounts of money on recruiting, hiring, and training teachers who have resigned. As such this research has the potential to influence cost-effective strategy development for school districts and local governments.
To gather substantial research on the influence of higher education institutions in preparing teachers for service in urban schools, most of the data was taken from the Education Resource Information Center (ERIC) database, google scholars, and recent news articles. The initial stages of this research included by reading news articles on the national state of teacher retention and searching for any variables that appeared frequently in the research, as a way to address any gaps in data that were uncovered, or to illuminate widespread findings that were relevant to my research aim. National policy think tanks, such as the Learning Policy Institute, were referenced for data on teacher attrition to support my claims. Finally, the experts in the field of cultural awareness in teacher preparation were studied as evidence for the validation of my study. Some of the experts that were referenced are Ingersoll, and Ladson-Billings.
4.2 Variables and Measures
The variables being analyzed in this capstone are the retention of novice teachers in urban districts or districts that have a large population of minority/low-income students, and the utilization of culturally responsive practices in the preparation experiences of pre-service teachers. These two variables were selected since they were referenced throughout multiple sources as being positively correlated. The independent variable of this study will be the presence of culturally responsive or multicultural education programming in higher education institutions. The guiding hypothesis for this study is that the inclusion of these practices will act positively on the dependent variable which is the retention of novice teachers in urban schools. Given that this study is a meta-analysis of multiple research efforts, these variables are not exclusive to each other. As such, there are confounding variables that implicate the strength of the correlation between these two variables. The confounding variables will be discussed in the limitations section.
A research effort that validated the correlation between teacher pre-service experiences, and the commitment of these teachers to urban school districts, was found in a 2011 study on the experience of pre-service teachers in urban districts. The results of this study were that pre-service teachers who completed their student teaching in urban schools where more than 50% of students received free or reduced lunch were 12 times more likely to commit to working in urban high-poverty schools than students who did not student teach in these settings (Whipp et al., 2017).
The influence of a teacher's pre-service experience on their attitudes immediately after their student teaching experience, and/or within their first five years of teaching will be described. Five years was selected as an indicator for novice teachers. Data included in a 2012 study indicated that on average, 50% of new teachers leave the classroom within five years (Ingersoll et al., 2012). To further reiterate the high attrition of novice teachers, data on the National Education Association (NEA) website, stated that teachers who teach in a high poverty school during their first year, are more likely to leave the profession than those who teach in a low poverty school (Fensterwald). In the examination of higher education institutions that have culturally responsive programs, qualitative data was compiled on university teacher preparation programs that has the following three factors: (a) evidence of a partnership between the university and a school district, (b) curriculum that speaks to race, poverty, or social justice, and (c) evidence of teacher commitment to working in urban or high-poverty schools as an outcome of completing the program. After organizing each source according to the themes found within the article, the qualitative data was used to develop a checklist that universities and schools can utilize if working to build a partnership.
After compiling preliminary data on the state of teacher preparation and retention in the United States, the research aim was determined to be a mixture of description and design. An example of some of the preliminary data that was gathered on the state of teacher attrition was quantitative data that referenced the percentage of teachers that left the classroom between 1-3 years, and anecdotal data that spoke to the detriment this had on student performance and school funding. The description approach was selected because there is mildly extensive research that already exists on teacher attrition and the research references various strategies used to resolve this challenge. The goal with the description approach, is to narrow in on a particular strategy for decreasing teacher attrition, by citing data to support a positive correlation between the inclusion of a culturally responsive framework in higher education institutions and the retention of novice teachers in urban schools. Teacher attrition in the United States is a public service challenge that has implications on various outcomes such as student performance, and city budgeting. As such, there are numerous sources of data gathered from years of research on this topic. The research will be addressing in specificity, the power of leveraging partnerships between universities and school communities to better prepare teachers.
The design aim is being utilized to reinforce the need for more comprehensive teacher preparation programs. As a result of this research, a short list of programmatic changes that universities can implement when considering how to strengthen the quality of novice teachers that are enrolled in their program was developed. If a university has a teacher preparation program with two or more of the characteristics that were indicated as being critical to a successful culturally responsive program, that program's framework was examined to make a case for why programs who are looking to restructure should reference this model. Description and design will explain why the implementation of a culturally responsive framework in teacher preparation programs is a key strategy for decreasing the levels of teacher attrition evidenced urban schools.
After completing preliminary research on teacher attrition in the United States, heavily utilized terms and phrases that were specific to the prevalence of this issue in urban school districts were collected. Urban schools are defined as those that have 50% or more students that are on free or reduced lunch, and is located in urban metropolitan area (Freedman et. al, 2009). These terms were used to create searches in academic databases. The terms used are teacher attrition, teacher retention, culturally responsive pedagogy in higher education institutions, pre-service teachers, and higher education. By combining these terms in various ways, searches were generated that provided the qualitative data needed to confirm that attrition was common among pre-service teachers who did not receive training on multicultural education or cultural responsiveness. So that research was as current as possible, only peer reviewed articles, or articles that were published after 2012 were reviewed. This limited the scope of the research significantly, so the search parameters were extended to capture sources that were no older than 2005.
To organize the qualitative data that was gathered as a result of utilizing the various search terms, a literature review matrix using google sheets was created. In the literature review matrix, data was collected that was critical to the research. To increase the ease of grabbing data to support each argument, data was organized in the matrix according to the following themes: theoretical argument, mention of homogenous teaching force, definition of urban teaching, teacher attrition trends, landscape of current teacher education programs, value of culturally responsive teaching/ culturally immersive practices, examples of culturally immersive practices, and outcomes of culturally immersive practices. Each theme headed a column in the literature review matrix. Data was then inserted from articles under the theme in each column. The data captured in the literature review matrix was used to make a case for the recommendations that will be provided.
To support the design aim, programs were identified as exemplars, if they had at least two of the three characteristics that were identified as critical to an effective teacher preparation program. The first indicator observed, was for evidence of teacher commitment. The goal of using this indicator was to determine what a programs contributions were to the attitudes and presumed preparedness of pre-service teachers, identify what methods they used to reach this level of self-awareness. For instance, an indicator that a program has contributed positively to the attitudes of pre-service teachers was if teachers indicated increased self-efficacy or awareness of personal biases as a result of the program. The development of this introspection is critical to a teachers perceived role in their classroom space. As such, this indicator of an effective teacher preparation program, explains why Vygotsky's sociocultural theory is important to this study.
The next indicator that was screened for was the evidence of partnership building between universities and school districts or community organizations. The existence of a partnership implies that a university's program is intentional and incorporates immersive learning experiences for the pre-service teachers to engage in their learning experiences in a meaningful way. Again, this indicator aligns with Vygotsky's sociocultural theory on providing scaffolding learning opportunities to students so that they are active agents in the learning process. Incorporating social justice in the program framework was the final indicator that was sought in an effective program. Although many programs did not include this characteristic, it was found to be critical to the development of self-efficacy in teachers. Due to funding limitations and other factors that make teaching a challenging career choice, many professionals rely on intrinsic motivations to get them through the day. Finding purpose in one's career is an example of intrinsic motivation that can be materialized by way of immersing oneself in dialogue on social justice.
Analysis and Results
5.1 Scope of analysis
An outcome of school and university partnerships, can be programmatic changes for the purpose of increasing teaching retention by way of impacting the readiness of pre-service teachers for high-poverty schools. By placing teachers in high-need schools for extended commitments, such as one to two semesters, they are immersed in experiences that will challenge them to navigate the reality of living through social injustices. This time commitment in a service community will empower student teachers to work through and reconstruct their biases as a way of reaching resolve. To quantify the qualitative data that was uncovered in this research, a meta-analysis of three programs that include two or more of the indicators shared in the methodology section will be provided below.
5.2 Midwestern region
An example of how these biases can be reconstructed was evidenced in the formulation of a community-based model for a teacher preparation program in an urban Midwestern city. With the financial contribution of a $3.2 million US Department of Education Teacher Enhancement Grant (Singer et al, 2010), the university was able to redevelop their program so that pre-service teachers could receive coaching and instructional practice in local urban elementary schools. In this 2008 study, the pre-service teachers supported math and literacy instruction inside of the urban classrooms and received direct mentoring from the staff and faculty on their application of skills developed.
To assess effectiveness of the program, surveys were distributed to pre-service teachers who were currently participating in the program, new teachers who were graduates of the program and were currently serving in urban schools, and faculty who administered instruction through the community-based model. Of the surveys distributed, 23 pre-service teachers completed the survey, 11 new teachers completed the survey, and 51 faculty completed the survey (Singer et al, 2010). Results from the survey found that implementing a teaching model that incorporates culturally-responsive practices was feasible for faculty. Faculty expressed that they were still able to teach to state certification requirements, while also incorporating course material from the new community-based model. Of the pre-service respondents who completed their service in both urban and suburban schools, 87% shared that they felt prepared to teach as a highly qualified teacher in urban schools (Singer et al, 2010). Specifically, of the respondents who student-taught in only urban schools, 94% indicated that they felt prepared to teach in urban schools (Singer et al, 2010).
This program was identified as exemplary, given its evidence of perceived student-teacher commitment to urban schools for recent program graduates, and for the inclusion of a culturally responsive framework. While the community-based model proved successful in developing the readiness of pre-service teachers for placement in urban schools, the program was largely unsustainable because soliciting faculty buy-in was a challenge. As a result of faculty dispositions and limited familiarity with urban education, the courses that were offered under the community-based model were no longer made a requirement of the program, and became an option for students in later years.
5.2 Urban Teacher Education Program
The Urban Teacher Education Program is a four-year undergraduate program that partners with large urban school districts to prepare student-teachers for employment in these schools by way of rigorous clinical experiences and immersion in urban schools and communities (Waddell et al., 2012). This program was developed with the support of consultation from community leaders such as political figures, business leaders, and district partners to ensure that the culturally responsive framework is indeed reflective of the community. One way of leveraging community input was to coalesce an Advisory Board of community stakeholders who refined the vision for the organization (Waddell et al., 2012). Members of the faculty board represented multicultural and social-justice organizations from the community such as NAACP, and the Urban League. Additionally, the Partnership Consortium was established as a working group of university stakeholders such as the School of Education, and Admissions, who met throughout the year to develop marketing and recruitment efforts for the program (Waddell et al., 2012). Finally, the Community Immersion Experience Planning Group was gathered to develop community-minded immersive experiences.
Another critical lever to the success of a culturally responsive teacher preparation program is the presence of faculty members who are committed to preparing teachers to serve disadvantaged students. A requirement for faculty participants in this program was the evidence of recent or current experience in urban schools. Faculty members in this program indicated a professional commitment or personal bond based on life experiences to social justice ((Waddell et al., 2012). Many of the faculty members were also identified as people of color. Additionally, the curriculum in the program is developed through the lens of social justice and multicultural pedagogy.
The indicators that this study exemplified were the presence of collaboration between the university and community stakeholders, and a commitment to teaching in urban schools as an outcome of serving in the program. As a result of this program, 94% of the graduates from the first three cohorts went on to teach. Of these students, 88% went to teach in urban schools (Waddell et al., 2012).
5.3 Multilingual/Multicultural Teacher Preparation Center
The final program being analyzed as an exemplary model is the Multilingual/Multicultural Teacher Preparation Center at California State University's Department of Teacher Education. This program has been active for over three decades, which validates the program's effectiveness and need in its community (Wong, Murai, Berta-Avila, William-White, Baker, Arellano,Echandia, 2007). Research shows that most students of color will go through their entire academic experience without being taught by a teacher of the same ethnic group (Latham, 1999). So that students of color have enriching academic experiences, this program values diversity when recruiting for and cultivating the interest of potential teachers.
The framework of this program incorporates three inter-related topics that shape the experiences of students who engage in this study. The frameworks that interconnect to form the basis of this program are language-conscious, race-conscious, policy-making, and program-development frameworks. These frameworks are lived out in courses on the topics of language development, second language acquisition, socio-cultural learning theories, and constructivist educational philosophies (Wong et al. 2007). To ensure that diverse learners are met in the academic space, student teachers are provided with best practices and pedagogy that is framed through a multicultural lens. Another core component of this program that influences its sustainability, is the offering of Freshman sections of the program coursework to students who have yet to declare a major. This has enabled the program to maintain student interest and build a pipeline of aspiring teachers for each academic year.
This program is very intentional with placing key actors into leadership positions that are critical to carrying out program outcomes. As of 2004, approximately 37% of the faculty were Latino/a, 25% were Asian, and 12% were African American (Wong et al. 2007). Faculty also have evidence of serving in bilingual education settings, are advocates for social justice efforts, or have led educational equity projects (Wong et al. 2007). Data collected from students who participated in this program during the Fall 2001 and Fall 2002 terms, found that over 80% of students from each cohort went on to teach in low-income schools (Wong et al. 2007). The indicators specific to successful teacher preparation programs that were present in this program are the evidence of a culturally responsive curriculum, and evidence of student commitment to urban schools. Data collected from the three programs can be found in Table 2. Examples of these indicators will be used to ground the recommendations in proven data.
Conclusion, Limitations, and Recommendations
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