Intended and Received Language Arts Curricula in a Standardized Era: Misalignments and Negotiations in Border Community Schools
AuthorMolera, Joan Elizabeth
Funds of Knowledge
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThis dissertation is about curriculum and leadership in Arizona-Mexico border community schools. Specifically, I examine intended and received language arts curricula (i.e., what content is taught, to whom, and with what pedagogy) (Porter, 2004), the misalignments between these curriculum types, and the misalignments in leadership approaches in border community schools. My dissertation draws on both classic and critical curriculum leadership studies (e.g., Hallinger, 2008; Johnson, 2006) with an emphasis on Funds of Knowledge (e.g., Moll, Amanti, Neff, & Gonzalez, 1992), cultural capital (e.g., Yosso, 2005), and habitus (e.g., Bourdieu & Passeron, 1990). I utilize ethnographic and phenomenological approaches to my study of four elementary and three middle schools located in two Arizona-Mexico border communities 120 miles apart from each other. Findings suggest that children living in border communities exhibit cultural capital (Yosso, 2005) and Funds of Knowledge (Moll et al., 1992), but these strengths are not considered in the intended curricula. Participants see the culture of the border and the culture of the school as two very separate constructs, particularly in relation to curriculum. The children in the study consider this reality commonsensical. Culturally responsive curriculum leaders, though positioned to change the status quo, are compliant and helpless against the dominant standardized regime. External forces silence everything these leaders know about research and practice. My dissertation concludes with implications for research, practice, and policy to blend culturally responsive structures, pedagogy, and behaviors to the standardization movement.
Degree ProgramGraduate College