Edited By Carrie Rogers, Kofi Lomotey and Adriel Hilton
Chapter Ten: Culturally Relevant Leadership in Practice: A Case Study of a Black Woman Principal in the West (Linda C. Tillman / Sonya Douglass Horsford)
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Culturally Relevant Leadership IN Practice
A Case Study of a Black Woman Principal in the West
LINDA C. TILLMAN AND SONYA DOUGLASS HORSFORD
As educational leaders in the U.S.A. grapple with the complexities of preparing today’s students in racially and socioeconomically segregated schools and communities, research on culturally relevant leadership practices have gained increasing attention. The pressures of widening racial and economic inequality coupled with what has been a high-stakes, top-down accountability environment, have incentivized individualized competition and performance over more collective notions of collaboration and community. As a result, educational outcomes, measured almost exclusively by test scores and other narrowly constructed indicators of student achievement, are now central to the work of today’s school leaders. Yet process, which is by definition central to leadership, has been largely ignored, resulting in even greater divides in not only achievement, but engagement by parents, families, and communities, which is key to educational access and opportunity. In the case of public school leaders serving large populations of poor, emergent bilingual, and racially minoritized children in resegregated schools and neighborhoods, the necessity to engage in culturally relevant practices becomes even more pronounced, especially for those educators whose background, lived experiences, and cultural norms contrast in important ways with those of their teachers and students.
Advancing high-quality educational experiences and opportunities for high-needs students in resegregated schools is no easy task. In fact, it requires additional knowledge concerning...
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