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Cultural Proficiency
A Manual for School Leaders

Fourth Edition


November 2018 | 360 pages | Corwin
This is a book for everyone who teaches.  Whether you are responsible for your organization’s training and development, you are providing basic education in an elementary school, or you are creating workshops for professional development, this book will help you manage the dynamics of difference necessary to create an environment where all students can learn.  Use this book as a workbook for small groups, or as a guide for improving the cultural competence of your teaching.

“This book is a riveting and unparalleled resource for all educational merchants of hope. . . . The insights, learning strategies, and professional development structures in this edition illuminate a path for all leaders to successfully commit to the journey of being equity champions!”

--Dr. Erick E. Witherspoon, National Director of Equity Professional Development Services
Generation Ready 


“There is no greater honor than to have one’s professional work become the inspiration for a new way of thinking, and transformative literature and action that change the world for schools and the children and youth they serve. I am grateful that the ideas have been so skillfully brought to scale by these authors.”
--Dr. Terry L. Cross, MSW, Founder and Senior Advisor
National Indian Child Welfare Association 

 
Preface to the Fourth Edition
 
Foreword to the Third Edition
 
Foreword to the Second Edition
 
Foreword to the First Edition
 
Acknowledgments
 
About the Authors
 
PART I. UNDERSTANDING CULTURAL PROFICIENCY
 
1. Cultural Proficiency
Cultural Proficiency: An Inside-Out Approach to Difference

 
The Four Tools

 
A Historical Context

 
Why Would I or My School Want to Engage?

 
Learning and Educating Effectively

 
Living in a Global Community

 
Participating in the Community

 
Culturally Proficient Leadership: Diversity “Is”

 
Resources for Developing Culturally Proficient Leaders

 
Read the Text First

 
Cultural Proficiency Books’ Essential Questions

 
Going Deeper: Reflection

 
Going Deeper: Dialogic Questions

 
 
2. A Cultural and Historical Context for Our Unfolding Democracy
An Inside-Out Approach

 
What It Takes

 
Culture Is . . .

 
What Happened to Race?

 
The Legacy of Segregation and Exclusion

 
A History of Caste in the United States

 
Labels for Historically Oppressed People

 
From Segregation to Cultural Proficiency

 
Culture and History Provide Perspective

 
Going Deeper: Reflection

 
Going Deeper: Dialogic Questions

 
 
3. Leadership for Today’s Schools
Our Journey With Culturally Proficient Leaders

 
Culturally Proficient Leadership: Exploring Deeply Held Values for Equity

 
Shared Vision

 
Long-Term, Systemic Change: Finding Leverage Points for Acti

 
Limitations of Local School Change Initiatives

 
Inside-Out Approach to Change: Why Leaders Ask Why?

 
Cultural Proficiency as a Frame for Change

 
Reflection

 
Culturally Proficient Leadership Is Transformative

 
Continuum as a Guide: Creating Initial Awareness Is Cultural Precompetence

 
Tools for Change

 
Formal and Nonformal Leaders

 
Reflection

 
Culturally Proficient Leaders Focus on Inequities

 
Going Deeper: Reflection

 
Going Deeper: Dialogic Questions

 
 
4. Framing Your Work With the Tools of Cultural Proficiency
The Important First Step: Inside-Out Change

 
Cultural Proficiency Conceptual Framework

 
The Four Tools of Cultural Proficiency

 
Going Deeper: Reflection

 
Going Deeper: Dialogic Questions

 
 
PART II. USING THE TOOLS OF CULTURAL PROFICIENCY
 
5. The Tool: Overcoming Barriers
Barriers to Cultural Proficiency

 
This Chapter Is for Everyone

 
Caveat: Systemic Oppression

 
Caveat: Privilege and Entitlement

 
Caveat: Unawareness of the Need to Adapt

 
Changing Educational Practices

 
Culturally Proficient Educators

 
Overcoming Resistance

 
Very Good News

 
Going Deeper: Reflection

 
Going Deeper: Dialogic Questions

 
 
6. The Tool: The Guiding Principles of Cultural Proficiency
Cultural Proficiency as an Expression of Values

 
Principle: Culture Is Ever Present

 
Principle: People Are Served in Varying Degrees by the Dominant Culture

 
Principle: People Have Group Identities and Personal Identities

 
Principle: Diversity Within Cultures Is Important

 
Principle: Each Group Has Unique Cultural Needs That Must Be Respected

 
Principle: The Family, as Defined by Each Culture, Is the Primary System of Support in the Education of Children

 
Principle: People Who Are Not a Part of the Dominant Culture Have to Be at Least Bicultural

 
Principle: Inherent in Cross-Cultural Interactions Are Social and Communication Dynamics That Must Be Acknowledged, Adjusted to, and Accepted

 
Principle: The School System Must Incorporate Cultural Knowledge Into Practice and Policymaking

 
Make It Count

 
Going Deeper: Reflection

 
Going Deeper: Dialogic Questions

 
 
7. The Tool: The Cultural Proficiency Continuum
Macro- and Microaggressions

 
The Continuum

 
Going Deeper: Reflection

 
Going Deeper: Dialogic Questions

 
 
8. The Tool: The Essential Elements
The Essential Elements of Cultural Proficiency

 
Finding Leverage for School Leadership

 
Going Deeper: Reflection

 
Going Deeper: Dialogic Questions

 
 
PART III. MAKING THE COMMITMENT TO CULTURAL PROFICIENCY
 
9. Commit to Action
So Where Do You Start?

 
You Are Here

 
Action Through Transformative Collaborative Inquiry

 
Design the Inquiry

 
Going Deeper: Reflection

 
Going Deeper: Dialogic Questions

 
 
10. A Note to Those Preparing School Leaders
Preamble

 
Introduction

 
Historical Overview

 
Legacy in Part

 
Transformative Leadership Is Inclusive Leadership

 
Systemic Leadership and Tools of Cultural Proficiency

 
Achievement Gaps, Disproportionality, and Our Preparation Programs

 
Call to Action

 
References

 
 
Resources
 
Introduction to Learning Strategies
Do Your Own Work

 
Believe It

 
Be Able to Work Without the Script

 
Set the Tone

 
Take Time to Process

 
Use Small Groups

 
Work in Teams

 
Develop Your Own Style

 
Be Prepared for Trouble

 
Have Fun

 
 
Resource A: Understanding Diversity
Learning Strategy 1: Telling Your Stories

 
Learning Strategy 2: Diversity in Your Life

 
Learning Strategy 3: Stand Up

 
Learning Strategy 4: Line Up

 
 
Resource B: Getting to Know Myself
Learning Strategy 1: Journaling

 
Learning Strategy 2: Diversity Lifeline

 
Learning Strategy 3: Name Five Things

 
Learning Strategy 4: Who Are You?

 
Learning Strategy 5: Who Am I?

 
Learning Strategy 6: Cultural Portrait

 
Learning Strategy 7: Identities

 
Learning Strategy 8: Group Stereotypes

 
Learning Strategy 9: The Process of Personal Change

 
Learning Strategy 10: Seven Dynamics of Change

 
Learning Strategy 11: Paradigms

 
Learning Strategy 12: Strength Bombardment

 
 
Resource C: Getting to Know Your Colleagues and Your Organization
Learning Strategy 1: Introductory Grid

 
Learning Strategy 2: Cultural Perceptions

 
Learning Strategy 3: What’s in a Name?

 
Learning Strategy 4: Totems or Crests

 
Learning Strategy 5: Family Portrait

 
Learning Strategy 6: Group Stereotypes

 
Learning Strategy 7: Circle of History

 
Learning Strategy 8: Storytelling

 
Learning Strategy 9: Voices That Resonate

 
Learning Strategy 10: Needs Assessment

 
 
Resource D: Understanding Power and Privilege
Learning Strategy 1: Barriers to Cultural Proficiency

 
Learning Strategy 2: Describe a Culturally Incompetent Organization

 
Learning Strategy 3: A Survey of Privilege and Entitlement

 
Learning Strategy 4: Listening and Hearing

 
Learning Strategy 5: Seven-Minute Day

 
 
Resource E: Going Deeper With the Principles
Learning Strategy 1: Guiding Principles Discussion Starters

 
Learning Strategy 2: Family Values

 
Learning Strategy 3: My Work Values

 
Learning Strategy 4: Examining Your Organizational Values

 
 
Resource F: Going Deeper With the Continuum
Learning Strategy 1: Cultural Proficiency Continuum

 
Learning Strategy 2: Exploring Behaviors Along the Continuum

 
 
Resource G: Going Deeper With the Essential Elements
Learning Strategy 1: Using the Essential Elements

 
Learning Strategy 2: Essential Elements of Culturally Proficient Leaders

 
Learning Strategy 3: Cultural Competence Self-Assessment

 
 
Resource H: Book Study Guide
 
Resource I: Cultural Proficiency Books’ Essential Questions
 
Suggested Foundational Readings
 
References
 
Index

"The 4th edition of Cultural Proficiency: A Manual for School Leaders provides a structure for educators to reflect on their leadership, the students, faculty, and community they serve, and to consider whether their practices create a school environment where all students achieve and each stakeholder feels valued. With updated ideas, learning strategies, and case studies, Randall, Kikanza, Raymond, and Delores masterfully guide readers in the process of self-reflection and the necessity for school leaders to be culturally proficient leaders. This manual is a must read for all leaders in education!"

Toby W. Heusser, Equity Teacher Specialist, and Eric Louérs Phillips, Supervisor Accelerating Achievement & Equity
Frederick County Public Schools

"This book is a riveting and unparalleled resource for all educational merchants of hope.  Cultural proficiency is the conduit of fortified relationships built to garner the greatest awareness of our individual and collective differences and similarities.  The insights, learning strategies, and professional development structures in this edition illuminate a path for all leaders to successfully commit to the journey of being equity champions!"

Dr. Erick E. Witherspoon, National Director of Equity Professional Development Services
Generation Ready

"There is no greater honor than to have one’s professional work become the inspiration for a new way of thinking and transformative literature and action that changes the world for schools and the children and youth they serve. I am grateful that the ideas first presented in 1989 have been so skillfully brought to scale by the authors of Cultural Proficiency: A Manual for School Leaders, 4th Edition."

Dr. Terry L. Cross, MSW, Founder and Senior Advisor
National Indian Child Welfare Association

"One of the most relevant books that provide not only the foundation for culturally proficient leadership but also, the tools and resources to assist our educational leadership candidates on an inside-out reflective journey. The case stories, provide appropriate learning context for dialogue on confronting individual and institutional biases and assumptions, analysis for diversity and inclusion, and action planning for altering educational policies and practices."

Dr. Becky G. Sumbera
California State University, San Bernardino

"The handbook offers a well-thought out and carefully structured program that can alter the world-view of participants and tilt them toward understanding what it means to become a truly inclusive society. It provides tools for specific skills training so that each person may develop competent interactions within their own social world. I am pleased to see this wonderful handbook entering into its fourth iteration, updated in ways that maintain and move the ever-essential mission of training culturally proficient individuals."

Dr. Michele Daniel, Jungian Analyst
Private Practice

"Cultural Proficiency is an invaluable resource to anyone working to create equity and inclusion in the world. Rather than just theory, this book is deeply practical and can be immediately applied to your life and profession.  Now more than ever, this updated edition is a transformative resource for everyone."

Tom Earl, Social Justice Consultant, Founder
T.H.E. Celebration Academy

"Cultural Proficiency offers effective tools for those who truly want to achieve what public education envisions: an authentically democratic society. There are often 'two schools' within on high achieving school: one for the dominant culture and one for others. Nuri-Robins and Lindsey have a solution for well-intentioned school districts. I will give this book to the many good people I know who serve on our local elected school boards."

Abby Arnold, Non-profit Consultant

"The book is an invaluable and engaging resource for those involved in the transformative work of cultural proficiency.  While aimed at school leadership, the lessons are useful for a variety of institutions.  The Third Edition was so helpful to me in my work with legal education; I look forward to implementing all of the resources in the Fourth Edition!"

Anastasia Boles, Law Professor, University of Arkansas Little Rock
University of Arkansas Little Rock, William H. Bowen School of Law

"Cultural Proficiency – A Manual for School Leaders has been instrumental in equipping our organization with the necessary tools and skills needed to serve our diverse population.   This manual is a must-read for anyone wishing to provide culturally relevant services to participants from various cultures.  The lessons learned by our staff have been invaluable!"

Donna Derden, Director of Operations and Compliance
Jenesse Family Center, Inc.

"Striving to be a culturally proficient institution requires that leaders have an unwavering commitment to learn about and from others. This manual sets the stage for this important work and is an invaluable resource for anyone who is committed to fostering work and learning environments that are grounded in respect, inclusion, and diversity."

Jane Kirschling, Dean and Professor, University of Maryland School of Nursing
University of Maryland School of Nursing

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ISBN: 9781506390543
£34.99