A Narrative Inquiry of Latina/o Teachers in Urban Elementary Schools
Latina/o teachers are underrepresented in the educational workforce. As such, the purpose of this narrative inquiry is to explore the experiences of Latinas/os who are teaching in urban school districts. The central question addressed by this narrative inquiry was: To what do Latina/o teachers attribute to their academic and career attainment? The sub-questions that helped achieve the central question were: 1) What experiences contributed to Latina/o teachers earning bachelor’s degrees in elementary education? 2) What experiences contributed to Latina/o teachers becoming employed as teachers in urban elementary schools? The site selected for this study resides in a medium-sized, Midwestern city. Within the selected site, purposeful, criterion and maximum variation sampling was used to identify participants. Written documents, semi-structured interviews, and focus-group interviews were used to construct a narrative profiles for each participant. Analysis of the narratives constructed began with enumerative, descriptive coding to identify chunks, or units of analysis, and their frequency. That led to the construction of interpretive codes by grouping descriptive codes into common categories and the construction of themes. The themes that emerged were family support, peer support, teacher/mentor support, specific preparation for urban teaching, and commitment to social justice and change agency. The results and findings can be used to improve conditions for Latina teachers and Latina/o learners in urban schools. The meaning constructed is significant in that it uncovers stories that can be used to support education in urban communities, diversify the teaching force, and increase the recruitment, retention, and effective preparation of Latina/o teachers for urban schools.
Table of Contents
Introduction -- Review of the literature -- Methodology -- Findings -- Discussion and recommendations -- Appendix A. Consent for Participation -- Appendix B. Initial Questionnaire -- Appendix C. Semi-Structured Interview Guide -- Appendix D. Focus Group Protocol -- Appendix E. IRB Approval