The global perspective of multicultural education is that minorities no longer needed to give up their culture, but also become exposed to the dominant culture in society. It is important to recognize that American society is an on-going melting pot of cultures and it is essential that this is reflected in the educational system as well. The move towards recognizing the need for cultural diversity in learning was not only a problem in the U.S, but in many other countries as well. In 1961, the Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) was established to “provide a setting where governments” all over the world “can compare policy experiences, seek answers to common problems, identify good practice and coordinate domestic and international policies”(OECD). The education chapter of the OECD sought to look at this in terms of the educational policies in each country and take into effect any changes that might be needed. Together, the countries reviewed and developed various policies in education. America was one of the first countries to join the OECD. Recently, the OECD education sector felt that it was important to look at the effects of minorities in education and soon developed the Education and Diversity sector. Each year, representatives from each country reviews and studies the effect of cultural diversity of education and come together to share their reviews and beliefs. The OECD then publishes their findings. Their first publication in 1991 established that “some form of multicultural education is needed for adjustment to global migration” (OECD). The plight of migrant families in education had become one of their main concerns.
In 2010, the OECD released their recent publication about multicultural education entitled “Educational Research and Innovation Educating Teachers for Diversity”. The difference between this publication and others is that the recent publication focused on one aspect of multicultural education which is the imperative need to prepare teachers for the diversity that many will encounter in their classrooms. In their summary the OECD makes it clear to state that “educational challenges posed by family background, socio-economic context and migration status are not only strongly linked to student performance, they determined students performance over and above the schools influence” (OECD 20). The organization came to the conclusion that it was imperative to provide help for these students and essentially the responsibility fell on the teacher. The publication also looks at the role that in-service teachers have in determining how well students achieve in the classroom. When students feel comfortable and are able to adapt in the classroom, the environment provides a more conducive learning opportunity. The teachers became the deciding factor in student’s achievement in the classroom.
Teachers and Multicultural Education
In the beginning, in-service teachers seemed to be one of the difficult...