Two education professors recently argued that aspiring K-12 teachers who hold conservative views and resist social justice theories may not be qualified to work with children.
Erin Miller and Tehia Stark-Glass, both professors at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, advanced the case in a March 8 article in the journal The New Educator entitled “The Maintenance of Whiteness in Urban Education,” expressing concerns that white conservative teachers will be unable to effectively teach minorities if they do not thoroughly internalize social justice.
The professors assert that some white students in their elementary education diversity classes have “impervious dispositions that would likely not qualify them to work with diverse children,” as evidenced by the fact that those who struggled most with the course content tended to “think they were being indoctrinated into Anti-American values.”
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To study this, Miller and Stark-Glass used data from 35 teachers-in-training at UNC who took one of their recent classes, 30 of whom were white. The professors only retained data from white students, explaining that their “abrasively honest” responses give insights into how best to discuss diversity with “white students who do not simply give teachers what they want to hear.”
Lara, a conservative white student who supports the Second Amendment, was singled out in the paper for recounting an instance in which her AP English teacher had warned her that she would receive a 0 if she were to write a paper about her opposition to gun control.
Though Miller and Stark tell the reader nothing about Lara’s actual ability to teach, they cite her “conservatism” as especially troubling.
Lara’s “conservatism spanned many topics and surfaced repeatedly throughout the course,” the professors lament, adding that it is “safe to assume that Lara probably became less culturally sensitive and open minded” as she continued to raise her conservative views in class.
“Probing even deeper, however, we see that Lara may have feared alienation from her conservative white community if she openly accepted the content posed in the course,” they speculate. “It could be that her refusal to accept the ideas of the course
Read more: https://www.campusreform.org/?ID=10661