Explores collaborative, democratic ways of preparing teachers to educate urban, working-class students.
Using a social justice approach to teacher education, the contributing teacher educators address the need to prepare teachers to understand the way social class, race, and culture impact their efforts to educate working-class students. By helping prepare teachers to strengthen democracy through education, the contributors offer ways to help them develop "critical consciousness"—the will to address society's injustices and inequities. Teachers who collaborate actively with their students, their families, and others, such as community and labor organizers, to challenge the economic and educational policies that keep the hierarchical structure in place, develop their own educational and political power alongside their students. These educators see schools as sites of struggle for democracy, and their students learn to direct their attitude toward outcomes that are in their collective self-interest.
Patrick J. Finn is Emeritus Associate Professor of Education at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York and is the author of Literacy with an Attitude: Educating Working-Class Children in Their Own Self-Interest, also published by SUNY Press. Mary E. Finn is former Director of the Urban Education Institute, Graduate School of Education at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York and is the coeditor (with Lauri Johnson and Rebecca Lewis) of Urban Education with an Attitude, also published by SUNY Press.
"It is an important work in that the good, the bad, and the difficult are discussed in proactive language, while providing a multitude of practices that are theoretically sound. The theory and strategies presented are helpful not only to teacher educators but also to classroom teachers committed to a social justice perspective. " — Francine P. Peterman, editor of Designing Performance Assessment Systems for Urban Teacher Preparation