ERIC Number: ED436520
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1999-Nov-18
Teacher Educators' Role in Promoting the Tenets of Multicultural Education.
Taylor, Pamela A.
Few preservice and beginning teachers are prepared for the diversity of today's classrooms. Educators must be aware of the many ways in which people are diverse and recognize that diversity is an enormous advantage. By 2010, 40 percent of students will be minorities. U.S. teachers are predominantly middle-class European Americans, yet one in four children (predominantly minorities) lives in poverty. Such statistics challenge teacher training institutions to matriculate teachers who are culturally sensitive and culturally literate. Multicultural education is a reform movement designed to bring about educational equity for all. It helps teachers recognize, accept, and affirm diversity. Culture and cultural diversity are important concepts for educators to understand because they influence students' lives. Culture is shared characteristics of a group of people. Cultural diversity involves differences in those characteristics between groups. The idea that teachers need specific preparation for working effectively with diverse students is not new. Researchers have been examining the issue for decades. Teacher educators are vital in the professional development of preservice teachers. In order for the goals and tenets of multicultural education to be realized in teacher education programs, teacher educators' roles must be more narrowly defined. Teacher educators must assess their own attitudes, beliefs, and knowledge and accept the need to make multicultural education a curricular priority. (Contains 56 references.) (SM)
Descriptors: Consciousness Raising, Cultural Awareness, Cultural Differences, Cultural Pluralism, Curriculum Development, Diversity (Student), Elementary Secondary Education, Equal Education, Higher Education, Multicultural Education, Preservice Teacher Education, Racial Differences, Student Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Educators, Teacher Role
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Mid-South Educational Research Association (Point Clear, AL, November 17-19, 1999).