The Challenges of Diversity: Moving Toward Cultural Proficiency
This chapter discusses cultural proficiency and argue that an important first step is to think reflectively about one's own and the school's position in relation to cultural proficiency. It provides an overview of three key areas: multicultural curricular reform and teaching, teaching English-language learners, and building home-community-school partnerships. The chapter explores the important theoretical and research work that informs approaches to educational practices. It argues that it is important to take a comprehensive approach to diversity. The chapter focuses on diversity and multiculturalism, in fairly general terms, presenting broad approaches to curriculum change and teaching that can be adapted to meet the needs of a student population that diverges along race, ethnic, national origin, religious, class, and gender lines. In addition to basic multicultural education strategies, it is important that educators understand the particular teaching and learning challenges faced by English language learners students.