African-Centered Schooling in Theory and Practice

By Diane S. Pollard; Cheryl S. Ajirotutu | Go to book overview

Epilogue

The African American Immersion Schools Evaluation Project ended its data collection at the two schools in June 1997. Since that time the two African American Immersion Schools in this city have continued along the paths established during their first five years of existence. The African American Immersion elementary school has continued to refine and solidify its particular African-centered schooling model. Although there have been some staff changes primarily as a result of retirements, there are processes in place at the school to socialize new teachers to the ongoing program. New teachers continue to meet the 18-credit education requirement. The school has retained its principal and its focus as an African-centered school. In addition, based on data compiled by the school district, students at the African American Immersion elementary school have continued to attain high levels of achievement as measured by district-level assessments.

The African American Immersion middle school has also continued in the direction established in the first five years. Staff mobility has continued to be high as teachers have not met the education requirements for remaining at the school. Two years beyond the completion of the five-year study period, only six staff members who were present when this initiative began in 1992 remain at the school. In addition, there has been another complete turnover of administrative staff. The new staff and principal have begun a rebuilding process at the school; however, recently, they were given a new mission by the district. Hence, the priority for the development of an African-centered educational model is not clear. Although it is still designated an African American Immersion middle school, a coherent African-centered program is not in place. It remains to be seen what emerges in the rebuilding process.

During the past two years, there have been major changes at the district level that have important implications for the African American Immersion Schools in this

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