ERIC Number: ED385373
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Apr-20
Masks of Abnormality: Constructing Dropouts in the 1st Grade.
Gordon, June A.
This paper discusses how first-grade teachers often perceive which of their students will ultimately succeed in school and which students will drop out. It argues that teachers look at a child's gender, color, behavior patterns, dress, family status, ethnicity, and socioeconomic level and, either consciously or unconsciously, label that child and make decisions about his or her educational future. It asserts that teachers look at students through their own values, norms, and cultural attitudes, making judgments about what is "normal" or positive and what is "abnormal" or negative. The paper discusses techniques to correct these biases, such as having teachers make home visits or meet with parents. It also discusses ways for teachers to talk to students about situations that may affect their school work, such as abuse and neglect. It concludes that teachers need to interact and train with people from different socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds to better understand their own prejudices and biases. (MDM)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the YMCA of the USA's Child Care Conference (Seattle, WA, April 20, 1995).