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Volume 6, Issue 2

Volume 6, Issue 2

Letter from the Editor
Some thoughts from our editor, Christina Belcher.

Program Improvement and Practice: In-Service and Pre-Service Student Teaching Reflections
Joan Hoskins, Christine T. Schuette, Margaret L. Charlton

A qualitative study was conducted with graduates (in-service teachers) and pre-service teacher candidates from a traditional elementary education program to explore perceptions of the student teaching process and its impact on teaching philosophy and practices. The program graduates and pre-service teachers described their experience as valuable, but believed their knowledge of pedagogy and classroom management to be deficient. The value of the internship process and implications for program improvement are discussed.

Transforming Teaching in the Inclusive Classroom: An Educator Looks at VIM
Robin LaBarbera

Inclusive classrooms are those in which students with special needs are educated alongside their non-disabled peers. This article examines the attitudes that teachers in inclusive settings may hold that are believed to be barriers to successful inclusion. Given that historically, students with special needs in inclusive classrooms have made limited academic progress through traditional whole-class instruction, it is suggested that a transformation in inclusive teaching take place. This article suggests that educators apply Dallas Willard’s (2002) concept of VIM, outlined in his book, Renovation of the Heart. Christian teachers may find the visionintention, and means Willard advocates to be useful in bringing about the desired transformation.

High-Stakes Assessment: Is a Christian Ethic of Care Possible?
Paul Shotsberger

The No Child Left Behind Act, the 2002 reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), has fundamentally changed the landscape of education in the United States. Amidst the current debate over reauthorization of ESEA, it is vital that Christian educators consider the moral implications of continuing and expanding current policies, especially as they relate to high-stakes assessment and its impact on students and teachers. The focus of the article is the challenge a high-stakes environment poses for educators who truly desire to demonstrate a Christian ethic of care in their teaching and what Christian teacher education can do to respond effectively to that challenge.

“Is it because I’m black?” Creating space for diversity in the Christian University

Steve Sider & Mary Ashun

This discussion paper examines the experiences of a black female faculty member as she enters the Christian university where there is limited ethnic diversity. She experiences critical student responses to her teaching which lead her to consider the reasons why she may be experiencing such resistance. As she confronts the possibility that it’s because she’s black, she enters into an on-going dialogue with a white male faculty member. Their experiences and conversations create a space for shared learning. The paper raises the question of how Christian universities might intentionally create space for faculty of color to feel welcome and embraced in the community.