Exploring Teachers' Racial Attitudes in a Racially Transitioning Society

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The growing diversity of America's public school enrollment makes it essential that all teachers be prepared for teaching students from diverse backgrounds. This paper explores the racial attitudes of teachers, specifically probing whether, and if so how, they may differ across schools of different student racial contexts. In particular, this paper compares how diverse or segregated schools, conceptualized in three different ways, may impact teachers' racial attitudes and awareness. Teachers' racial attitudes may influence teacher behavior towards students of different racial backgrounds, and relate to other aspects of professional behavior and decision-making. School racial context, particularly racial stability, was found to be an important predictor of teachers' racial attitudes. This paper illuminates important patterns to consider and study further as the racial composition continues to become more diverse and school racial contexts become more complex in terms of composition, stability, and in relation to district composition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)448-476
Number of pages29
JournalEducation and Urban Society
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Urban Studies


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