Educational Leadership


Creating More Effective Multiethnic Schools

Document Type


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The Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues / John Wiley & Sons, Inc.


The empirical literature from education, psychology, and sociology is reviewed in order to identify strategies with demonstrated effectiveness in improving either the educational outcomes of students of color, interethnic relations in schools and colleges, or both. The conceptual framework for this review identifies eight core themes that can guide policy and change efforts in this area: (a) the need to explicitly and directly address issues of aversive and institutional racism, (b) the importance of conceiving of schools as agents of change, (c) the importance of leadership in setting a school or district tone, (d) the paradox that strategies for improving the educational outcomes for students of color can only be achieved by focusing on race and ethnicity, but the outcome of these efforts benefit all students, (e) the goals of improving interethnic relations and the educational outcomes of students of color are linked (in that improving one improves the other), (f) the need to explicitly affirm one's confidence in the abilities of students of color, (g) the importance of creating opportunities for the development of a strong, positive racial or ethnic identity, and (h) the need to create settings in which students feel connected to school through their relationships with peers and teachers.