Faculty Publications

Forging Partnerships For Multicultural Teacher Education

Document Type


Journal/Book/Conference Title

Critical Multiculturalism: Rethinking Multicultural and Antiracist Education

First Page


Last Page



What is multicultural education fundamentally about? What should it be about? To a great many people in the United States, particularly those who are members of the dominant society, multicultural education seems primarily to entail adding recognition of cultural differences to the education enterprise, despite the efforts of many educators over the past 25 years to argue for a much broader conception (Bartolomé, 1995; Nieto, 1995). As this conception of multicultural education is enacted in the schools, it also becomes endorsed and perpetuated by members of subordinated groups (Montecinos, 1994). In this conception of multicultural education, schooling is taken for granted as basically sound and well-structured, but as sometimes too culturally homogeneous in its curriculum and special events. Multicultural education, therefore, is understood to mean changing teachers’ and administrators’ choices regarding which groups are represented in the curriculum and changing the curriculum’s ability to adapt to individual differences in students (i.e., teaching to diverse learning styles). These views are embedded in commonsense understandings of predominantly white, western capitalist societies such as the United States and Canada, and correspondingly their institutions, as fair, open, democratic, and meritocratic.


Department of Educational Psychology and Foundations

Original Publication Date


DOI of published version