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Multiculturalism and Social Work | San Francisco State University

Reducing racism in schools: moving beyond rhetoric

Author: Spencer, Michael S.
Author Background:
Date 1/1/98
Type Journal
Journal Title: Social Work in Education
Volume/Pages v 20 p. 25-36.
Subject Matter Human Behavior
Abstract Although educational institutions have added their share to the socialization of racism in children, schools have also tried to amend inequality and racial bias. A major reform of the curriculum content and educative processes of the national education system is represented by the movement toward multicultural education. This type of education includes the study of racial and ethnic differences as well as issues related to age, gender, socioeconomic status, and physical disability. However, critics of multicultural education state that students continue to be blind to inequalities in society when they are taught about different cultures. According to these antiracist critics, multiculturalism in schools has focused on the curriculum and the classroom to the detriment of the examination of wider social, economic, and political influences related to inequality and racism. Global education, an outgrowth of multicultural and antiracist education, focuses on interrelated systems that affect the entire planet and deals with diversity on a global level. Challenges to reducing racism in schools and strategies that address these challenges are outlined.