21st Century Diversity, Educational Equity, and Transformative Change

  • Suniti SharmaEmail author
  • Althier M. Lazar
Part of the Education, Equity, Economy book series (EEEC, volume 7)


This chapter serves as an introduction to the book, Rethinking 21st Diversity in Teacher Preparation, K-12 Education, and School Policy: Theory, Research, and Practice. In engaging with diversity, the authors of this book lend a fresh perspective to how we understand diversity in K-12 contexts by considering not just what diversity means but also how it matters, where, for whom, and to what effects. The authors comprise a diverse intellectual and global mix of education faculty, school leaders, policy researchers and K-12 teachers. How the authors identify, articulate, and respond to diversity from distinct theoretical orientations, research methodologies, and teaching philosophies is also a response to the age-old debates: What is the purpose of public schools? Who is being served by public schools? Whose knowledge counts? Who defines what knowledge counts and for whom? Where does K-12 diversity fit into these conversations and debates? How do we prepare teachers for teaching K-12 diversity? The authors’ response to these questions is timely and offer diverse perspectives on how to rethink teaching and learning aimed at educational equity and equal opportunity for all students.


Diversity Educational equity K-12 education Teacher preparation Identity and power School policy 


  1. American Civil Liberties Union. (2017). Race and inequality in Education.
  2. Anyon, J. (2005). Radical possibilities: Public policy, urban education, and a new social movement. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  3. Apple, M. (2012). Can education change society. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  4. Applebaum, B. (2010). Being white, being good: White complicity, white moral responsibility, and social justice pedagogy. Lanham: Lexington Books.Google Scholar
  5. Au, W. (2009). High-stakes testing and discursive control: The triple bind for non-standard student identities. Multicultural Perspectives, 11(2), 65–71.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Boyd, A., Lagarry, A., & Cain, J. M. (2016). Moving from self to system: A framework for social justice centered on issues and action. International Journal of Critical Pedagogy, 7(2), 171–197.Google Scholar
  7. Castro, A. J. (2010). Themes in the research on preservice teachers’ views of cultural diversity: Implications for researching millennial preservice teachers. Educational Researcher, 39(3), 198–210.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. D’Souza, D. (2002). Letters to a young conservative. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  9. D’Souza, D. (2008). The enemy at home: The cultural left and its responsibility for 9/11. New York: Broadway Books Random House Inc.Google Scholar
  10. Darling-Hammond, L. (2001). Inequality in teaching and schooling: How opportunity is rationed to students of color in America. In The Right Thing to Do, The Smart Thing to Do Enhancing Diversity in the Health Professions, Summary of the Symposium on Diversity in Health Professions in Honor of Herbert W. Nickens, M.D. Institute of Medicine (pp. 208–233). Washington, D.C: National Academy Press.Google Scholar
  11. Darling-Hammond, L. (2006). Constructing 21st century teacher education. Journal of Teacher Education, 57(3), 300–314.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Dimitriadis, G. (2012). Critical dispositions. Evidence and expertise in education. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  13. Fabelo, T., Thompson, M. D., Plotkin, M., Carmichael, D., Marchbanks, M. P., & Booth, E. (2011). Breaking schools’ rules: A statewide study of how school discipline relates to students’ success and juvenile justice involvement. College Station: Public Policy Research Institute.Google Scholar
  14. Faltis, C., & Abedi, J. (2013). Extraordinary pedagogies for working within school settings serving nondominant students. Review of Research in Education, 37(1), vii–vxi.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Foucault, M. (1977). Discipline and punish. New York: Vintage Books.Google Scholar
  16. Gewertz, C. (2010). Core knowledge to link curriculum to core standards foundation. Education Week.
  17. Guyette, C. (2016). As the flint water crisis fades from the headlines, the state of Michigan has an enduring responsibility to the City’s school children. ACLU of Michigan OCTOBER, 18, 2016 Scholar
  18. Hirsch, E. D. (1999). The schools we need and why we don’t have them. New York: Anchor Books. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.Google Scholar
  19. Hursh, D. (2009). Beyond the justice of the market combating neoliberal educational discourse and promoting deliberative democracy and economic equality. In W. Ayers, T. Quinn, & D. Stovall (Eds.), Handbook of social justice in education (pp. 152–164). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  20. Kamenetz, A. (2015). New Orleans schools, 10 years after Katrina: Beacon or warning? NPR ED how learning happens.Google Scholar
  21. Ladson-Billings, G. (1995). Toward a theory of culturally relevant pedagogy. American Educational Research Journal, 32, 465–491.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Lather, P. (2004). Scientific research in education: A critical perspective. British Educational Research Journal, 30(6), 759–772.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Lipman, P. (2004). High-stakes education: Inequality, globalization, and urban school reform. New York: Routledge Falmer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Lipman, P. (2005). We’re not blind. Just follow the dollar sign. Rethinking Schools, 19(4), 54–58.Google Scholar
  25. Lipman, P. (2011). The new political economy of urban education. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  26. National Center for Education Statistics (2015). The condition of education. U.S. department of education. Washington, DC.
  27. National Center for Education Statistics. (2016a). Digest of educational statistics.
  28. National Center for Education Statistics. (2016b). Status and trends in the education of racial and ethnic groups. U.S. Department of Education.
  29. Nieto, S. (2012). Honoring the lives of all children: Identity, culture, and language. In B. Falk (Ed.), Defending childhood: Keeping the promise of early education (pp. 48–62). New York: Teachers College Press.Google Scholar
  30. Nieto, S. (2013). Finding joy in teaching students of diverse backgrounds: Culturally responsive and socially just practices in U.S. classrooms. Portsmouth: Heinemann Publishers.Google Scholar
  31. Simon, S. (2015). Special report: Class struggle – How charter schools get students they want. Reuters. Edition: United States.
  32. Valenzuela, A. (1999). Subtractive schooling: U.S.-Mexican youth and the politics of caring. Albany: State University of New York Press.Google Scholar
  33. Valenzuela, A. (2002). Reflections on the subtractive underpinnings of education research and policy. Journal of Teacher Education, 53(3), 235–241.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Winn, M., & Behizadeh, N. (2011). The right to be literate: Literacy, education, and the school-to-prison pipeline. Review of Research in Education., 35, 147–173.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Teacher EducationSaint Joseph’s UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA

Personalised recommendations