A Significant Issue in Education: Teacher BIAS Essay

A Significant Issue in Education: Teacher BIAS Essay

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A significant problem of practice in education is teacher bias. Teacher bias has implications around race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality and socioeconomic status. Teachers must be willing to examine their beliefs, acknowledge and overcome their biases. Teachers need to evaluate their practices in relation to their ideals as well as recognize and assess the position of power they hold in their classrooms in order to be true Social Justice Educators (Cooper, 2003).
According to the most recent data from the Department of Education, preschoolers who are racially diverse are being disciplined at a rate 3 times as great as their white classmates (Rich, 2014). The Department of Education data shows 48 percent of preschool suspensions were of black students who only make up 18% of all students attending preschool (Rich, 2014). This data is deeply disturbing. What could a preschooler possibly do to warrant a suspension?
The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES, 2004) reported that Black students continue to trail White students with respect to educational access, achievement and attainment. Research on the effectiveness of teachers of Black students emphasizes that the teachers’ belief about the Black students’ potential greatly impacts their learning. Teachers tend to teach black students from a deficit perspective (King, 1994; Ladson-Billings, 1994; Mitchell, 1998). White teachers often aim at compensating for what they assume is missing from a Black student’s background (Foorman, Francis & Fletcher, 1998). The deficit model of instruction attempts to force students into the existing system of teaching and learning and doesn’t build on strengths of cultural characteristics or preferences in learning (Lewis, Hancock...


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...nds Pattern of Inequality Along Racial Lines, The New York Times, p A18.

Shaver, J. P. (1992). Epistemology and the education of social science teachers. Paper presented at the International Conference on Subject-Specific Teaching Methods and Teacher Education. [Online]. Available: ERIC Database #ED355143.
United States Commission on Civil Rights. (2004). Closing the achievement gap: The impact of standards-based education reform on student performance. Washington, DC: United States Government Printing Office.

U.S. Department of Education. (2006). No Child Left Behind executive summary report. Retrieved September 14, 2006 from http://www.ed.gov/nclb/overview/intro/execsumm.html

United States Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2004). The condition of education 2004. Washington, DC: United States Government Printing Office.

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