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MULTICULTURAL EDUCATION: A CHALLENGE TO THE GLOBAL

TEACHERS

A Term Paper

In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Subject Course

ED 200: Educatioal Philosphy

1st Semester, A.Y. 2019-2020

Code: 05219

Presented to:

Prof. Jocelyn B. Bacasmot, Ph.D.

Professional Schools

University of Mindanao

Matina Campus, Davao City

Presented by:

Patricia Jane C. Caquilala

MAED- Educational Management

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Abstract

What is Multicultural Education? How did this start to emerge in the


educational institutions and in the curirculum? How Multicultural Education
does affects the education in the Philippines? How does Multicultural
Education imoact the 21st Century Learners? What are the perceptions of the
Global Teachers on Multicultural Education? Domestic diversity and
unprecedented immigration have created a vibrant mixture of cultural, ethnic,
linguistic, and experiential plurality. As we all know it, present day schools are
heterogeneous in which a class has unique learners waiting to learn new
things and to be taught how to use their newly acquired knowledge to their
advantage in a meaningful way. Not only did the technology advanced in
society and in education, but the diversity of the learners widened as all of
them came from different households bearing more than two cultures (e.g.
having parents with different races, born and raised in another country, etc).
Because there is ever-increasing diversity that students bring to classrooms,
this confused global teachers about how to teach, what to teach, and even who
to teach (Ozturgut, 2011).

Keywords: Education, Multicultural Education, Diversity

Introduction

Domestic diversity and unprecedented immigration have created a

vibrant mixture of cultural, ethnic, linguistic, and experiential plurality. As we all

know it, present day schools are heterogeneous in which a class has unique

learners waiting to learn new things and to be taught how to use their newly

acquired knowledge to their advantage in a meaningful way. Not only did the

technology advanced in society and in education, but the diversity of the

learners widened as all of them came from different households bearing more

than two cultures (e.g. having parents with different races, born and raised in

another country, etc). Because there is ever-increasing diversity that students

bring to classrooms, this confused global teachers about how to teach, what to

teach, and even who to teach (Ozturgut, 2011).

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What is Multicultural Education? How did this start to emerge in the

educational institutions and in the curirculum? How Multicultural Education

does affects the education in the Philippines? How does Multicultural

Education imoact the 21st Century Learners? What are the perceptions of the

Global Teachers on Multicultural Education? These questions will be the guide

on how we further understand Multicultural Education and to answer why it is a

challenge for the Global Teachers.

Multicultural Education and its Definition

Multicultural education does not take any definite definitions as it is till

exploratory. Other authors refer Multicultural Education as any form of

education or teaching that incorporates the histories, texts, values, beliefs, and

perspectives of people from different cultural backgrounds. An idea, an

educational reform movement, and a process whose major goal is to change

the structure of educational institutions so that male and female students,

exceptional students, and students who are members of diverse racial, ethnic,

language, and cultural groups will have an equal chance to achieve

academically in school (Banks & Banks, 2001).

Multicultural education is an educational system that follows a standard

process to deliver basic educational concepts that are suitable for all students.

This system requires an overall school reformation to confront some practices

of discrimination and racism in schools and communities. This reformation

should target schools curricula and the strategies used in their teaching and

the interactions between school personnel as well as students and their

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families (Lucas, 2010). These characteristics involve different physical and

mental abilities, gender, ethnic and racial backgrounds, socioeconomic

classes, languages, religions, and sexual orientations. Therefore, it is

demanded to develop an educational system that addresses diversity.

Koppleman (2011) acknowledged that a multicultural education involves

students with racial and ethnic differences (Black, White, Oriental, Latin, etc)

as well as students of various nationalities to acquire a quality education. Such

an acknowledgment admits that we should not only determine students’

differences as individuals but also to customize the curricula to meet their

needs. Accordingly, a multicultural education system requires an effective

consideration in order for diverse students to get an equivalent opportunity to

achieve their academic success (Banks & Banks 2009).

In this paper, Multicultural

A Brief History of Multicultural Education

The historical roots of multicultural education lie in the civil rights

movements of various historically oppressed groups. Many trace the history of

multicultural education back to the social action of African Americans and other

races (e.g. Asians) who challenged discriminatory practices in public

institutions during the civil rights struggles of the 1960s (Banks, 1989;

Davidman & Davidman, 1997). Among those institutions specifically targeted

were educational institutions, which were among the most oppressive and

hostile to the ideals of racial equality. The activists demanded for the inclusion

of more information about the Black experience in their existing curriculum.

These demands were then extended to include hiring Black teachers and

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administrators, community control of schools in Black communities, and the

incuding the aspects of Black culture, such as Black English, in the curriculum.

Activists, community leaders, and parents called for curricular reform and

insisted on a reexamination of hiring practices. Both, they demanded, should

be more consistent with the racial diversity in the country.

The Black Revolt of the 1960s was an extremely important social and

historical force which had an impact on educational institutions as well as from

other ethnic groups, such as Mexican-American,Native Americans,

Asian-Americans and Puerto Rican-Americans, who were encouraged to

protest and fought for equality. Encouraged by what they perceived as the

positive responses by dominant institutions to the demands of Afro-Americans,

and made acutely aware of their own feelings of alienation and oppression,

each of these groups,in a variety of ways, made similar demands on

Anglo-American institutions, and especially educational institutions. These

demands included a call for more historical information about ethnic groups,

the hiring of more teachers of ethnic descent, and the revision of the

curriculum so that it would more accurately reflect the cultures of various

ethnic groups

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, the women's rights movement joined

this push for education reform. Women's rights groups challenged inequities in

employment and educational opportunities as well as income, identifying

education as a primary contributing factor in institutionalized and systemic

sexism. Feminist scholars and other women activists, like groups of color

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before them, insisted on curricula more inclusive of their histories and

experiences. They challenged the discrepancy low number of female

administrators relative to the percentage of female teachers (Banks, 1989).

Sensing progress -- if only slight -- by groups of color and women in

their struggles for human rights and social and educational change into the

early 1970s, other traditionally oppressed groups found growing support and

energy for their movements. Through the 1970s, gay and lesbian groups, the

elderly, and people with disabilities organized visible and powerful pushes for

sociopolitical and human rights.

As K-12 schools, universities, and other educational institutions and

organizations scrambled to address the concerns of these and other

historically marginalized groups, a host of programs, practices, and policies

emerged, mostly focused on slight changes or additions to traditional

curriculum. Together, the separate actions of these various groups who were

dissatisfied with the inequities of the education system, along with the resulting

reaction of educational institutions during the late 1960s and 1970s, defined

the earliest conceptualization of multicultural education.

The 1980s saw the emergence of a body of scholarship on multicultural

education by progressive education activists and researchers who refused to

allow schools to address their concerns by simply adding token programs and

special units on famous women or famous people of color. James Banks, one

of the pioneers of multicultural education, was among the first multicultural

education scholars to examine schools as social systems from a multicultural

context (1981). He grounded his conceptualization of multicultural education in

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the idea of “educational equality.” According to Banks, in order to maintain a

“multicultural school environment,” all aspects of the school had to be

examined and transformed, including policies, teachers' attitudes, instructional

materials, assessment methods, counseling, and teaching styles (1981; 1989).

By the middle and late 1980s, other K-12 teachers-turned-scholars

including Carl Grant, Christine Sleeter, Geneva Gay, and Sonia Nieto provided

more scholarship in multicultural education, developing new, deeper

frameworks that were grounded in the ideal of equal educational opportunity

and a connection between school transformation and social change. In order

to move beyond slight curricular changes, which many argued only further

differentiated between the curricular “norm” and the marginalized “other,” they

built on Banks's work, examining other structural foundations of schools and

how these contributed to educational inequities. Tracking, culturally oppressive

teaching approaches, standardized tests, school funding discrepancies,

classroom climate, discriminatory hiring practices, and other symptoms of an

ailing and oppressive education system were exposed, discussed, and

criticized.

Meanwhile, the cultural landscape of the United States continued to

become less visibly white Christian and more visibly rich with cultural, racial,

ethnic, and religious diversity, underscoring the necessity for everyone to

develop a set of skills and knowledge that the present system was failing to

provide all students. These included creative and critical thinking skills,

intercultural competence, and social and global awareness. The education

system was not only plagued by unequal treatment of traditionally oppressed

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groups, but was also ill-equipped to prepare even the most highly privileged

students to competently participate in an increasingly diverse society.

So as the 1980s flowed into the final decade of the twentieth century,

multicultural education scholars refocused the struggle on developing new

approaches and models of education and learning built on a foundation of

social justice, critical thinking, and equal opportunity. Educators, researchers,

and cultural theorists began to further deconstruct traditional models in both

the K-12 and higher education arenas from a multicultural framework. Joel

Spring, Peter McLaren, Henry Giroux, and others contributed to a new body of

critical sociocultural criticism of educational institutions within the context of

larger societal and global dimensions of power, privilege, and economics, and

the intersections of these. What started as small curricular shifts and additions

has become a framework for reexamining both schools and society from a

progressive and transformative framework. For example, Ovando and

McLaren (2000, p. xix) point out that as long as we continue to operate within

the existing capitalist social relations of the larger society, there is good reason

to believe that racism and social injustice will continue to pose a serious threat

to democracy and that the dream of social equality will remain largely

unrealized.

So, while work continues toward school transformation, the emerging

conceptualizations of multicultural education stress that this work must be

understood relative to the social and political structures that currently control

education in the United States, and that the two are intrinsically linked.

Multicultural education, in its determination to address the ills and

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shortcomings of the current education system, can be a starting point to

eliminating inequities in society.

Multicultural Education in the Philippines

The issue of the multicultural education which is considered as a

problem that has plagued many other countries in the world is properly

addressed. For instance, there are different ethnic groups that can be found

inside the classrooms of the country. These include the Catholics, Muslims,

Buddhists, Protestants, Animists, Chinese, Mestizos, and native Filipinos

(Mitchell & Salsbury, p. 259). Albeit their different cultural, social and religious

orientation, these students are receiving equal and fair treatment from their

teachers in terms of the subject content, class discussion, cultural and

religious exploration and the like.

Moreover, in the Philippine school setting, there is no racial

discrimination among gender, social classes, economic status and religious

affiliations. Boys and girls are given fair treatment inside the four walls of the

classroom. The teachers are not speaking about the color, religion, economic

stability and gender of the students. These things are not big deal inside the

school in terms of their treatment to the students. Though the country is not

financially stable with regards to the program, efforts are still being made to

solve the issue on multicultural education within the context of the country’s

educational system.

The Impact of Multicultural Education in the 21st Century

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Many students from different countries and diverse cultural

backgrounds came to the US to seek quality education. Students from the

dominant culture should understand differences and similarities between their

own culture and other cultural backgrounds. Implementing a multicultural

education system has several advantages for future generations. First, it

creates an engaging and socialization classroom climate, so it is important for

teachers when delivering educational instructions to address students’ cultural

diversity. Second, it develops confidence and friendship between students and

their teacher, which may increases students’ performance. Therefore,

teachers should show care and respect to their students’ ethnic and racial

backgrounds to achieve such goals (Gay, 2004). Furthermore, participating in

classroom activities allow students to learn from each other by sharing

different thoughts and ideas from different cultural experiences.

Consequently, multicultural education, if adopted effectively, this will

help in reducing racial attitudes among students and improving diverse

students learning to achieve academic success so they can be active

participants in the society (Okoye-Johnson, 2011). Finally, providing

challenging activities to all students, for example, encouraging multicultural

music in arts education, can promote their cognitive thinking skills and

creativity (Reed, 2010). The role of teachers here is to add more efforts to

ensure that all students are achieving these advantages. Hence, creating a

multicultural classroom environment that addresses the previous strategies

may narrow the achievement gap between students from the dominant society

and others who came from diverse cultural backgrounds (Okoye-Johnson,

2011).

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The Teaches’ Perceptions pabout Multicultural Education

Teachers' perceptions and their trends regarding culturally diverse

students in the classroom are an important element in educating, motivating,

and making a difference in education among students irrespective of their age,

gender, ethnicity, language, and religion. These perceptions and attitudes

influence teachers’ expectations and treatment of these learners (Le Roux,

2001).

A study by Barry and Lechner (1995) surveys 73 preservice teachers’

attitudes and their awareness of multicultural teaching and learning. All

participants completed an orientation to education course, such as an

elementary social studies methods (17.8%) or media for children course

(68.5%). Additionally, they experienced laboratory teaching in schools with a

high proportion of African-American students. The study finds that most

respondents to the questionnaire understood and were aware of different

issues in multicultural education, and they expected to have culturally diverse

students in their classrooms. Although aware of the need for skills to work with

diverse student populations, new teachers were undecided as to how well their

education program had prepared them to instruct students with different

religious backgrounds and cultural from their own, or communicate with the

families of these students.

Pohan (1996) studies the personal and professional beliefs of 492

prospective teachers to identify variables related to the development of

multicultural awareness and sensitivity. The study finds a significant

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relationship between prospective teachers’ personal beliefs and their

professional beliefs. Students who bring strong biases and negative

stereotypes about diverse groups are less likely to develop the types of

professional beliefs and behaviors most consistent with multicultural sensitivity

and responsiveness. Another relevant finding from Pohan’s study is that

personal and professional beliefs are significantly related to students’

cross-cultural experiences. Although causation cannot be inferred, the clear

implication is that prospective teachers who have more cross- cultural

experiences are more likely to develop favorable personal and professional

beliefs about diverse learners.

Fueyo and Bechtol (1999) investigate how teachers’ perceptions

impact classroom practices and the relationship among their students.

According to this study, teachers who do not value bilingualism not only have

lower expectations of linguistically diverse students in terms of achievement,

but often discourage these students from using their primary language for

academic purposes. The research further states that teachers, who negatively

perceive ethnic minorities, have also shown differential and biased treatment

of students based on stereotypes of gender differences and students’ last

names. The study emphasizes that teachers must be aware of cultural

sensitivity through engaging in the critical and continual process of examining

their personal biases, prejudices and perceptions that affect students' learning

experiences.

Martines’ (2005) study concerns teachers’ ability to discuss their

culturally diverse students in the context of the consultation process, as well as

their perception of cultural issues and level of multicultural understanding. The

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study finds 19 major themes that have already been addressed in many

articles regarding multicultural education. In addition, nine salient and minor

themes are recognized and, although not arising with as much consistency,

are noted as evidence of teachers’ multicultural awareness. However,

pertaining to teachers’ multicultural teaching efficacy, awareness and

knowledge are not enough to develop Multicultural Consultation Coding

System (MCCS) level 3 competency skills.

Aydin and Tonbuloğlu (2014) examine curriculum and instruction

doctoral students in order to find out their perception of and attitude towards

multicultural education. A qualitative case study is used to collect the data

through informal observations, interviews, field-notes, and document analysis.

The study finds that the most emphasized values are democracy and

justice—as well as tolerance, peace and respect—and that these are

reinforced through multicultural education. Moreover, all participants define

cultural richness as the necessary ability to consider and value individual

differences. The study recommends making multicultural education a

necessity so that equal rights and opportunities will be shared among all

groups and people in society’s structure.

Results

Based from all that was gathered about Multicultural Education, a

realization has emerged. It is a great challenge for teachers to integrate

Multicultural Education in the classroom. Given that the teachers must be

knowledgeable enough to be sensitive and understanding to their learners’

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origin and culture. My stand in this topic is that Multicultural Education is

revolutionary. This opened a great path for education to walk to. In my

perspective, a teacher must be aware not only the learners’ capacity to learn,

but to be able to know their backgrounds so that the teacher can create a

healthy environment where the learners can learn comfortably and can create

a bond to their co-learners without being bound by their culture, religion,

gender and ethnicity.

Discussions

Multicultural Education is one of those educational reforms that was

integrated to the curriculum implemented to cope up with the changing world.

21st Century is a time where everything is fast-paced and everything should be

solved immediately to move on. The people must understand that every

people is unique and their backgrounds, from what roots they come from. It is

great to know that one simple cry from the minority could shake the world just

because they wanted equality in society.

Education has come a long way, it started as a means to survive and

cope up with the dangers of a harsh environment, then to building civilizations,

creating an organized government, discoveries that opened up a lot of

opportunities for many people to learn how the world works, searching to

understand one’s self and to create oneness with people of different race and

origins. Now that we’ve reached the period where Education is now considered

a right rather than a privilege, if we could use Education as a means to grow

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rather than to oppress more people, then it is right to assume that Human

Civilization is in the right path.

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References
Banks, J. A., & Banks, C. A. M. (Eds.). (2001). Multicultural education: Issues
and perspectives (4th ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon.

Banks, J. A., & Banks, C. A. M. (2009). Multicultural education: Issues and


perspectives. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Banks, J. A. (2013). The construction and historical development of


multicultural education, 1962–2012. Theory Into Practice, 52(sup1),
https://doi.org/10.1080/00405841.2013.795444

Davidman, L., & Davidman, P. (1997). Teaching with a multicultural


perspective: A practical guide. New York: Longman.

Irvine, J. J., & Armento, B. J. (Eds.). (2001). Culturally responsive teaching:


Lesson planning for elementary and middle grades. Boston: McGraw-Hill.

Ovando, C., & McLaren, P. (2000). Cultural recognition and civil discourse in a
democracy. In Ovando & McLaren (Eds.), The politics of multiculturalism
and bilingual education: Students and teachers caught in the cross fire.
Boston: McGraw-Hill

Pohan, C. A. (1996). Preservice teachers' beliefs about diversity: Uncovering


factors leading to multicultural responsiveness. Equity, and Excellence in
Education,29(3),

Fueyo, V., & Bechtol, S. (1999). Those who can teach: Reflecting on teaching
diverse populations. Teacher Education Quarterly, 26, 1–10. Futrell, M. H.,
Gomez, J., & Bedden, D. (2003). Teaching the children of a new America: The
challenge of diversity. Phi Delta Kappan, 84,

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