Published on March 15, 2014
The Significance of Cultural Competence & Culturally Responsive Practices in Education Dr. Vivian Stith-Williams Virginia Department of Education August 4, 2009
PRESENTATION OUTLINE • Introductions • Warm-up Activities • Cultural Diversity Bingo • Rationale for Cultural Competency Training • Definition of Terms • Cultural Competence Model • Cultural Competence Continuum • Pedersen’s Developmental Model • Privilege Exercise statements • Culturally Responsive Practices • Policies, Practices, and Procedures • Checklist for Success
Rationale for Cultural Competency Training • Demographic Shifts in Population • Culture Influences All Aspects of One’s Environment • Teacher vs. Student Composition • Limited Preparation in Educating a More Diverse Student Population
• Deepen understanding and increased sensitivity • Consideration as to what extent you perceive yourselves to be culturally competent • Gain a Greater Appreciation of Diversity Issues • Ethical Responsibility
DEFINITIONS OF TERMS • CULTURE- Learned traditions, principles and guides of behavior that are shared among members of a particular group. Codes of behavior, values, and norms, beliefs, customs, communications or “the way we do things here”. Art, music, food, literature, and clothing are all visible aspects of culture. Ethnic groups have cultures Businesses have cultures Neighborhoods have cultures. It is dynamic and changes over time. There is diversity within cultures. Each person is a member of many cultures!
Culture • You continually construct from history, circumstance, family and community…
Iceberg Concept of Culture Weaver (1986)
• CULTURAL COMPETENCY- It is the integration and transformation of knowledge about individuals and groups of people into specific standards, policies, practices and attitudes used in appropriate cultural settings to increase the quality of services, thereby producing better outcomes In the school setting, it involves the ability to acquire knowledge of education-related beliefs, attitudes and practices to improve student achievement. It is a developmental process occurring along a continuum from cultural destructiveness to cultural incapacity to cultural blindness to cultural pre-competence to cultural competence to cultural proficiency.
Definitions continued • Cultural Proficiency – knowing how to learn and teach about different groups in ways that acknowledge and honor all people and the groups they represent. • Ethnicity – groups in which members share a cultural heritage from one generation to another; one’s geographical origin, group image and a sense of identity derived from contemporary cultural patterns and a sense of history. Many people are of multiple ethnicities. • Race - a classification system based on physical characteristics and generalized conceptions of skin color. A political and social construct that is most often important in societies with a history of oppressing specific groups. • Racial Identity – one’s sense of group identity or affiliation and association with others who possess the same racial heritage.
Ethnicity • You identify with
• RACE – You are classified as
Many terms to describe the work and concept Culturally relevant Culturally aware Culturally & Linguistically Competent Culturally Appropriate Cultural sensitivity Culturally Competent Culturally Proficiency Multicultural Competence Culturally Effective Cultural Humility Linguistically Competent
Cultural Destructiveness Refusal to acknowledge the presence or importance of cultural differences; Differences are punished and suppressed; Schools endorse the myth of universality. Cultural Incapacity The individual or organization chooses to ignore cultural differences; No attention is devoted to supporting cultural differences; Emphasis may be on the cognitive growth and maturity of youngsters versus addressing the issues of cultural awareness. Cultural Blindness Individuals and organizations believe that cultural differences are of little importance; People are viewed through a western cultural mainstream lens; Messages are communicated to students that their culture is of little consequence to the learning experience. Cultural Pre-Competence The individual or organization recognizes and responds to cultural differences; There is an open acknowledgement of the need for cultural competence; Educators may seek out new information regarding diversity by attending training sessions or interacting with those individuals who have insider cultural information. Cultural Competence The individual and organization value and appreciate cultural differences; Exploration of issues related to equity, cultural history, knowledge, and social justice; Students’ cultural experiences are valued and integrated into the learning process. Mason et al.’s Cultural Competence Model (1996)
The Cultural Proficiency Continuum 1. Cultural Destructiveness. See the difference, stomp it out. Negating, disparaging, or purging cultures that are different from your own. 2. Cultural Incapacity. See the difference, make it wrong. Elevating the superiority of your own cultural values and beliefs and suppressing those of cultures that are different from your own. 3. Cultural Blindness. See the difference, act as if you don’t. Acting as if the cultural differences you see do not matter, or not recognizing that there are differences among and between cultures. 4. Cultural Pre-competence. See the differences, respond inadequately. Recognizing that lack of knowledge, experience, and understanding of other cultures limits your ability to effectively interact with them. 5. Competence. See the difference, understand the difference that difference makes. Interacting with other cultural groups in ways that recognize and value their differences. 6. Cultural Proficiency. See the difference and respond. Honoring the differences among cultures, viewing diversity as a benefit, and interacting knowledgeably and respectfully among a variety of cultural groups.
Valuing Culture and Ethnicity “People’s religion, culture, and ethnicity often are not just facts about them, but are central to their self-definitions. People are not just persons who happen to be Christians, women, or African Americans. These characteristics are not possessions, like clothing, that can be shed or changed at will. Instead, people are Christians, women, or African Americans. If so, then one reason that can be given for respecting diversity is that to fail to do so is to reject who people are. It is to deny their worth. It does an especially insidious kind of violence to them” (Strike, Haller & Soltis, 2005).
Pedersen’s Developmental Model • Awareness – consciousness of one’s own attitudes and biases as well as the sociopolitical issues that confront culturally different youngsters • Knowledge – accumulation of factual information about different cultural groups • Skills – integration of awareness competencies to positively impact children from culturally distinct groups • Attitude – belief that differences are valuable and change is necessary and positive. Each domain builds successively on the previous one such that mastery of an earlier domain is necessary before proceeding to subsequent domains.
Knowledge • Understands their own cultural heritage and acknowledges how it affects their values and assumptions. • Understands other worldviews and perspectives. • Understands how social change occurs. • Is familiar with the nature of institutional oppression and power. • Understands that there are unjust institutional barriers that exist for diverse groups. • Demonstrates a realization and understanding of internalized oppression and its impact on identity and self-esteem. • Understands how class, gender, race, etc. affect individuals and their experiences. • Understands the ways that cultural differences affect verbal and nonverbal communication and the notion of personal space.
SKILLS • Identify and openly discuss cultural differences and issues. • Gain respect of individuals who are culturally different themselves. • Challenge oppressive systems and serve as an ally to those being oppressed. • Use cultural knowledge and sensitivity to defend the rights and values of individuals and groups. • Accurately assess one’s own multicultural skills, comfort level, growth, and development. • Use verbal and non-verbal (body language) responses to communicate with diverse individuals and/or groups. • Resolve conflicts in culturally appropriate manner. • Use multiple viewpoints in problem-solving. • Employ critical thinking skills.
Attitude/Awareness • Believes that differences are valuable and that learning about others who are culturally different is necessary and rewarding. • Is open to change, and believes that change is necessary and positive. • Willing to self-examine and, when necessary, challenge and change their own values, worldview, assumptions and biases. • Is personally committed to justice, social change and combating oppression. • Accepts other worldviews and perspectives and are willing to acknowledge that, as individuals, they do not have all the answers. • Believes that cultural differences do not have to interfere with effective communication or meaningful relationships.
Five essential elements contribute to a system’sFive essential elements contribute to a system’s ability to become more culturally competentability to become more culturally competent: 1. Valuing diversity 2. The capacity for cultural self-assessment 3. Consciousness of the “dynamics” inherent when culture interact 4. Institutionalization of cultural knowledge 5. Developing adaptations to service delivery reflecting and understanding between and within cultures. These five elements must be manifested in every level of the service delivery system as reflected in attitudes, policies, structures, and services.
Culturally Responsive Practices • Provide services that acknowledges that culture is central to learning and encouraging students and others to learn by building on the experiences, knowledge, and skills they bring to the classroom, group, office or meeting. • Service providers who are aware and respectful of the importance of the values, beliefs, traditions, customs, and parenting styles of the children and families they serve. • Educators and other staff who are also aware of the impact of their own culture on their interactions with others and take all of these factors into account when planning and delivering services to children and their families.
The Provision of Culturally Competent Services in the School Setting At the Policymaking Level Culturally competent policymakersCulturally competent policymakers: * appoint board members from the community so that voices from all groups of people within the community participate in decisions * actively recruit multiethnic and multiracial staff * provide ongoing staff training and support developing cultural competence * develop, mandate, and promote standards for culturally competent services * insist on evidence of cultural competency when contracting for services
At the Policymaking Level * nurture and support new community-based multicultural programs * engage in or support research on cultural competency * support the inclusion of cultural competence on provider licensure and certification examinations * support the development of culturally appropriate interview guides and assessment instruments for psychological tests Culturally competent policymakers:
At the Administrative Level Culturally competent administrators: Include cultural competency requirements in staff job descriptions and discuss the importance of cultural awareness and competency with potential employees Ensure that all staff participate in regular, in-service cultural competency training Promote programs that respect and incorporate cultural differences Consider whether the facility’s physical plant, hours, and staffing are accessible and whether its physical appearance is respectful of different cultural groups.
At the Service Level Educators and related service personnel who areEducators and related service personnel who are culturally competentculturally competent: learn as much as they can about a student’s or family’s culture, while recognizing the influence of their own background on their responses to cultural differences include neighborhood and community outreach efforts and involve community cultural leaders if possible
At the Service Level continued work within each student’s family structure, which may include grandparents, other relatives and friends recognize, accept, and when appropriate, incorporate the role of community volunteers understand the different expectations people may have about the way services are offered (for example, a period of social conversation may be necessary before each contact with a person; or access to a family may be gained only through an elder adhere to traditions relating to gender and age that may play a part in certain cultures.
Cultural Competence Checklist for Success • Make the setting and environment more welcoming and attractive based on families’ cultural mores. • Avoid stereotyping and misapplication of scientific knowledge. • Include community input at the planning and development stage of projects. • Use educational approaches and materials that will capture the attention of your intended audience. • Find ways to partner with the community.
Cultural Competence Checklist for Success continued • Understand there is no recipe. • Hire staff that reflect the client population. • Understand cultural competency is continually evolving. • Be creative in finding ways to communicate with population groups that have limited English-speaking proficiency.
Six Domains of Culturally Competent Service Delivery (Lopez, Rogers et al., 1999) 1.Legal and Ethical Issues • Knowledge of local, state and federal laws and regulations, awareness of litigation, and understanding of ethics • Advocate for public policy and educational law 2. School Culture, Educational Policy, and Institutional Advocacy • Knowledge of aspects of organizational culture that promote achievement and mental health for culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) students • Ability to play a leadership role in the implementation of supportive interventions for CLD students and their families
3. Psychoeducational Assessment • Knowledge of and skills in assessing CLD students, including consideration of variables such as environment, social issues, language development, racism, second language acquisition, acculturation, educational history, quality of educational program, and SES • Understanding that normed tests may not be a valid measure for English Language Learners (ELLs) due to inappropriateness of norms, scores reflecting English proficiency, product as opposed to process orientation, fairness of content, and differences in educational background, acculturation and economic situation
4. Academic, Therapeutic and Consultative Interventions • Skills in multicultural counseling and cross-cultural consultation • Knowledge of multicultural education, ELL programs, and school culture/culture of staff and students 5. Working with Interpreters • Knowledge of recommended systemic practices, including guidelines from professional organizations and national and state policies, and plans for hiring, training and managing interpreters
Domains continued 6. Research • Knowledge of research related to culture and language issues and ability to conduct research that is sensitive to cross-cultural issues • Awareness of Emic-Etic distinctions (Emic: behaviors or views that are common to an ethnic or minority group; Etic: aspects of human functioning that are more universal to people across cultures).
Integration of Cultural Knowledge The knowledge developed regarding culture and cultural dynamics, must be integrated into every facet of a school, program or agency. Staff must be trained, and effectively utilize the knowledge gained. Administrators should develop policies that are responsive to cultural diversity. Program materials should reflect positive images of all people, and be valid for use with each group. Fully integrated cultural knowledge may affect global changes in human service delivery.
For example, educational institutions and accreditation bodies might develop cultural competence standards to ensure teacher and administrator preparation. Then these same professionals collaborate with families to develop school policies that reinforce culturally familiar values to improve children’s behavior. Institutionalized cultural knowledge can enhance an organization’s capacity.
The goal is to see cultural proficiency as a way to understand, embrace, and talk about differences that recognizes and respects individuals and their cultures. Becoming culturally proficient means raising awareness of and closing the gap between a person’s expressed values and how he or she is actually perceived and experienced by clients, colleagues, and the community.
Next Steps! GET STARTED! Shift your thinking! Focus on diversity and inclusion! Consider the needs of tomorrow! Define goals. Movement is not progress and progress is not excellence! Identify the components in your system that are functioning well now! Start there! Have conversations about the issue, using the cultural proficiency continuum! Identify and Examine your barriers
“Cultural and linguistic competence is a life’s journey not a destination”!
REFERENCES • California TomorrowCalifornia Tomorrow, Cultural Competency: What is it and Why it Matters, December, 2006. • King, Mark A., Sims, Anthony, & Osher, David.,King, Mark A., Sims, Anthony, & Osher, David., How is Cultural Competence Integrated in Education? • Cross, T., Bazron, B., Dennis, K., & Isaacs, MCross, T., Bazron, B., Dennis, K., & Isaacs, M., Towards a culturally competent system of care: A monograph on effective services from minority children who are severely emotionally disturbed: Volume I.: Georgetown University Child Development Center, 1989. • Goode, T.D., Jones, W., Dunne, C., & Bronheim, S.Goode, T.D., Jones, W., Dunne, C., & Bronheim, S. And the journey continues… Achieving cultural andAnd the journey continues… Achieving cultural and linguistic competence in systems serving children andlinguistic competence in systems serving children and youth with special health care needs and their families.youth with special health care needs and their families. National Center for Cultural CompetenceNational Center for Cultural Competence, Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development, 2007.
• Lindsey, R., Roberts, L., & Campbell-Jones, FLindsey, R., Roberts, L., & Campbell-Jones, F., The culturally proficient school: An implementation guide for school leaders. Corwin Press, 2005. • Keyes, Marian, Burns, Rebecca, Kusimo, PatriciaKeyes, Marian, Burns, Rebecca, Kusimo, Patricia, It Takes A School: Closing Achievement Gaps Through Culturally Responsive Schools, 2006. • Educational LeadershipEducational Leadership, Vol. 64, No.6, “Responding to Changing Demographics”, March 2007. • McIntosh, PMcIntosh, P. White privilege: Unpacking the Invisible knapsack. In Peace and Freedom, 1989. • National Association of School PsychologistsNational Association of School Psychologists, Provision of Culturally Competent Services in the School Setting, 2004. • Stiff-Williams, H.RStiff-Williams, H.R., ”Increasing Teachers’ Cultural Competence to Promote Improved Student Performance, Conference Address, VDOE, 2006. • Lindsay, R., Robins, K., & Terrell RLindsay, R., Robins, K., & Terrell R., Cultural Proficiency: A Manual for School Learners, 2003.
• Various dimensions of culture!
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