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Title:Reflections of a few: Experiences of Black male special education teachers
Author(s):Cormier, Christopher Joseph
Director of Research:Meadan-Kaplansky, Hedda
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Meadan-Kaplansky, Hedda
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Ostrosky, Michaelene; Shriner, James; Artiles, Alfredo
Department / Program:Special Education
Discipline:Special Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Black Teachers
Black Male Teachers
Black Male Special Education Teachers
Teacher of Color
Special Education Teachers
Special Education Teachers of Color
Experiences of Teachers of Color
Experiences of Special Education Teachers
Experiences of Special Education Teachers of Color
Abstract:An exhaustive body of empirical research has examined the experiences of Black male educators. However, the experiences of Black male special education teachers remain largely unexplored, in spite of the urgent need for more Black men in this role. An interview study with 10 Black male special education teachers was conducted to explore their experiences, roles, challenges, and supports. Participants described different experiences and reasons for becoming a special education teacher and the roles they assume beyond their primary role as teachers. The challenges that the participants mentioned were related to their relationships with administrators, colleagues, and parents, and being perceived as a disciplinarian. The participants reported that their colleagues presume that one of their primary roles as Black male teachers is to discipline other students, specifically Black students, even to the point of interrupting their own teaching. At the same time, Black male special education teachers often had additional nonacademic roles such as sports coaching. This may reinforce colleagues’ failure to treat Black male special education teachers as valuable members of the teaching team who can aid with content instruction. Participants also described a need for additional supports and professional development opportunities to successfully fulfill their different roles. All of these experiences affect study participants’ morale and are, therefore, likely to affect the recruitment and retention of other Black male special education teachers. Further implications for research and practice are provided in the concluding chapter.
Issue Date:2019-12-12
Rights Information:Copyright 2019 Christopher J. Cormier
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-08-27
Date Deposited:2020-05

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