Living the Vision: A Disadvantaged and Marginalized Alternative School’s Perspective on School Culture and Educational Change

Sunnie Lee Watson, Charles M. Reigeluth


The United States’ educational system have responded to school reform needs over the lastseveral decades, but had little success in producing meaningful change. In this paper, weargue that there is a need to engage in a more inclusive social discourse to address theproblems in the educational system in the United States. This two year critical ethnographicstudy examines a disadvantaged alternative school and it’s members’ perspectives on schoolculture and school change. Through a discussion about the district-wide, systemic changeeffort that has been implemented in their school district, participants share perspectives onwhat schools can do in order to meet disadvantaged and marginalized students’ needs.Through a process of listening to the voices of these marginalized and disadvantaged students,we hope to enrich the discussion of educational change.

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