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Transforming Schools from the Ground-Up with Local Stakeholders: Implementing Learning Lab for Inclusion and Systemic Transformation at a Middle School

Abstract

Historically, students from racially minoritized communities receive exclusionary disciplinary actions more frequently and severely in the United States. Researchers have recommended that schoolwide behavioral interventions implemented to address racial disproportionality need to be culturally responsive to local school contexts. Using the theory of expansive learning, we conducted a one and a half year-long formative intervention, Learning Lab, to examine and address racial disproportionality with local stakeholders at an urban middle school. We analyzed how parents, teachers, administrators, community members, and researchers collaborated to design a culturally responsive school discipline system at Rogoff Middle School. The analysis of expansive learning actions showed that the systemic transformation process facilitated at the school included a cycle of seven expansive learning actions. We discussed implications of the current study for education research and practice.

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Acknowledgements

The first author acknowledges the support of Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction under Disproportionality Demonstration Grant #84.027.

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Correspondence to Aydin Bal.

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Bal, A., Afacan, K. & Cakir, H.I. Transforming Schools from the Ground-Up with Local Stakeholders: Implementing Learning Lab for Inclusion and Systemic Transformation at a Middle School. Interchange 50, 359–387 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10780-019-09353-5

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10780-019-09353-5

Keywords

  • Racial disproportionality
  • Theory of expansive learning
  • Cultural-historical activity theory
  • Culturally responsive behavioral interventions and supports
  • Formative intervention
  • Learning Lab