Critical consciousness and current classroom teachers

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Amy L. Jablonski (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
H. Svi Shapiro

Abstract: Public education continues to be a cornerstone of society in the United States. The process of public education has been touted as the way great equalizer in that it provides all with an equal opportunity to gain skills and knowledge to live out the American Dream. Rhetoric such as this strongly supports the notion meritocracy and marginalizes the most fragile in society. In reality public education has, and continues to be utilized as systemic structure that perpetuates the grave social, political, and economic inequalities in society. Numerous factors such as accountability measures, attendance lines, school choice, vouchers, and the influence of capitalistic ideals in education impact the overall structure of education. To better understand the awareness of these factors, I studied current classroom teachers in the specific areas of their extent of critical consciousness. This purpose of this study was to explore the degree in which classroom teachers are aware of systems the social, political, and economic systems of power. Additionally, I studied the level of awareness teachers have regarding the impact these structures have on the structure of school, including how these factors impact students. I approached this study through the lens of critical theory in order to gain an understanding of how the social construction of education has evolved to the current status. I utilized a compilation of published school data, a staff survey and individual teacher interviews to address the three posed research questions in this study. Results indicate current classroom teachers are in need of gaining awareness of systems of power and how these structures impact not only students, but also larger social outcomes in society. Results of this study also indicate a need to address the content of pre-service experiences to prepare teachers to navigate a global classroom space.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2018
Critical Consciousness, Education, Inequalities, School Choice, Social Consciousness, Teacher Preparation
Education, Elementary $x Social aspects
Discrimination in education
Educational equalization
Educational sociology
Critical pedagogy

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