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ERIC Number: EJ1045845
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1068-3844
A Comparison of African & Mainstream Culture on African-American Students in Public Elementary Schools
Green-Gibson, Andrea; Collett, April
Multicultural Education, v21 n2 p33-37 Win 2014
The public educational system is comprised of diverse demographics wherein each student has a distinct cultural personal history (O'Brien, 1998). In America, the traditional perception was that a melting pot society existed. But deMarrais and LeCompte (1999) maintain that a stew pot or salad bowl would be a more appropriate analogy. Melting pot suggests a European-American, middle- and upper-class orientation, whereas stew pot or salad bowl implies that diverse demographics exist alongside one another with many distinctive cultures enhancing humanity across America (de- Marrais & LeCompte). The melting pot theory has dominated the education system, adversely affecting many African-American students who attend urban, public schools (Carruthers, 1995; deMarrais & LeCompte; Marks & Tonso, 2006; Pai & Adler, 2001). A growing body of researchers have reported that educational leaders are constantly searching to find the best methods for teaching African-American students who attend urban public schools (NCLB, 2002). Leadership stakeholders and educators alike are now beginning to explore the possibility that infusing the cultural history of African descent within the schooling process may help African-American students learn more effectively (Pai & Adler, 2001). While a small number of predominantly African-American elementary schools infuse African culture in the curriculum, most schools do not (Cholewa & West-Olatunji, 2008).The public education system has always been based on Eurocentric values that work to benefit the cultural backgrounds of European Americans. To ensure that education aligns with the norms of African-American students, African-centered education is necessary (Shockley, 2007), but advocates of African culture infusion have yet to convince the public, and even some African-Americans, of the benefits of African cultural infusion. This article describes the results of a causal-comparative design study that compared the educational practices of two predominantly African-American public schools in Chicago based on their AYP reports. It concludes that African-American students who attend mainstream (European-centered) public schools, schools that do not infuse African culture, are failing at a higher rate when compared to African-American students who attend African-centered schools. Based on the study's finding, the article recommends current educational policies in the state of Illinois be reevaluated and rewritten to impose a requirement for all Chicago public schools in predominantly African-American neighborhoods to infuse African culture in the educational experience of attending students.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Illinois