Special Education Practices: Personal Narratives of African American Scholars, Educators and Related Professionals


Festus E. Obiakor, PhD (Editor)
Valdosta State University, Valdosta, GA, USA

Ramel Smith (Editor)
Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, WI, USA

Series: The Silenced Voices in Education
BISAC: EDU026000

Special education is a vibrant, complex, and controversial field that continues to garner widespread attention from policy makers, researchers, practitioners, and educators. It is a field whose primary goal is to provide an appropriate education for students with special needs, a disproportionate number of whom are from culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) backgrounds. In this book the authors bring together critical perspectives and historical viewpoints on special education by a group of distinguished and well-recognized African American scholars, educators, and related professionals. These authors raise important questions, challenge assumptions about traditions and conventions in special education, and provide insights into how to reach and teach underserved African American children and youth in special education. (Imprint: Nova)

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Foreword by Laurel Garrick Duhaney



1. Special education contexts, challenges, and prospects in the United States: my voice
(Festus e. Obiakor)

2. How predominantly white universities abet the malfunction of special education services for African American students
(Satasha l. Green)

3. Getting in and staying in: a look into the black hole of special education
(Darrell l. Williams)

4. Valuing essential human capital for African American youth with special needs: my story
(Bridgie Alexis Ford)

5. The “goodness” of special education and related barriers: an educator’s perspective
(Sunday O. Obi)

6. All children are special: Response-to-intervention for African American students
(Alisia M. Moutry)

7. Connecting with African American Males: My experiences as a special education teacher(Christopher D. Yawn)

8. Personal reflections: Significance of Mentors for African American women in the special education field
(Cheryl A. Utley)

9. Introspective voice and vision of an African American teacher educator in special (adapted) physical education
(Samuel R. Hodge)

10. Gifted and talented education: is special education appropriate?
(Rogers E. Onick)

11. Achieving educational equity for African American students with and without exceptionalities
(Temple S. Lovelace)

12. From deficit to divergence: refocusing special education for African Americans labeled as having emotional and behavioral problems
(Tachelle Banks)

13. The reality of racism: recounting memories of schooling as an African American student with gifts and talents
(Floyd D. Beachum)

14. Shining the light on our youth with special needs
(Lia A. Knox)

15. From numbers to letters: surviving special education despite the Odds
(Ramel l. Smith)


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