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ERIC Number: EJ1127960
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1360-3116
Taking the Risk to Engage in Race Talk: Professional Development in Elementary Schools
Coles-Ritchie, Marilee; Smith, Robin Renee
International Journal of Inclusive Education, v21 n2 p172-186 2017
Developing public education where every child has the right to learn requires that teachers pay attention to and engage in race talk--open discussion about race, social construction of race, and racism. While it is clear that children engage and reflect critically about these aspects of race even at a young age, teachers rarely engage in race talk with them. In this study, an African-American preservice teacher and a White teacher educator explore how African-American, Polynesian, and White in-service teachers, participating in "Courageous Conversations" professional development, address or avoid race talk in their elementary schools through the lens of Critical Race Theory (CRT) and what risks they take when they do. Findings, through in-depth, semi-structured interviews, demonstrate that (1) racism was observed and/or experienced by all teachers in elementary schools; (2) lived racial experiences impacted teachers' approach to conversations about race; (3) creating an open space was crucial for race conversations; (4) "Courageous Conversations" provided a "new language" to talk about race; and (5) administrative support facilitated more attention to race. Findings indicate the road to greater equity in schools requires more professional development about race talk in elementary schools.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 530 Walnut Street Suite 850, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Tel: 215-625-8900; Fax: 215-207-0050; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A