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Opening Doors

Opening Doors
An Implementation Template for Cultural Proficiency

Foreword by David Verdugo

© 2016 | 152 pages | Corwin

See how one school district made Cultural Proficiency real—and how you can too!

In spite of Brown vs. Board of Education, true integration and corresponding equality of educational opportunity is still far from reality in American schools.  

Opening Doors tells the story of Ventura Unified School District's successful implementation of cultural proficiency, which opened long-closed doors for marginalized students and returned gains on every key success metric. Most importantly, it will empower you to do the same for your school or district. Resources include:

  • A method for evaluating the impact of educational decisions on students' access to learning
  • A clear three-year implementation plan for making your school culturally proficient
  • A content-rich companion website that includes templates and forms for implementing the book’s suggestions

It is long past time to make cultural proficiency real by ensuring universally equal access to educational resources for all students. This book removes the remaining barriers to the achievement of this ideal. 

“This powerfully insightful and thought provoking book, takes us on a journey to culturally proficient actions.”
Rosemary Papa, Professor
Northern Arizona University

“The book is full of compassion, conviction and hope—pure heart, pure corazón—in the quest to tackle inequality and the opportunity gap head on.”
Gilberto Q. Conchas, Professor of Educational Policy and Social Context
University of California, Irvine

Publisher's Acknowledgments
About the Authors
Chapter 1 – What Frames Us, Defines Us
Getting Centered  
Going Deeper  
Chapter 2 - Culturally Proficient Leadership Fosters Transformative Change
Getting Centered  
Going Deeper  
Chapter 3 – Change Begins with Core Value and Belief Statements
Getting Centered  
Going Deeper  
Activity 3.1 – Can You Believe?  
Activity 3.2 – Walking Forward Part I  
Chapter 4 – Yes, We Actually Live Our Values
Getting Centered  
Going Deeper  
Activity 4.1 – Walking Forward Part II  
Activity 4.2 – I Am Activity  
Chapter 5 – Continuous Learning Involves Deconstructing our Learning
Getting Centered  
Going Deeper  
Activity 5.1 - The Power of Us  
Activity 5.2 – Opening Doors for Students – Do Our Actions Reflect Our Values? Part 1  
Activity 5.3 – Opening Doors for Students – To What Extent are We Escorting Students Through the Doors? Part 2  
Activity 5.4 – Data that Demonstrates Areas of Need  
Activity 5.5 – Book Club  
Resource A – Book Study Guide  
Resource B - Cultural Proficiency Books’ Essential Questions  
Resource C – 3-Year Implementation Journey  
Resource D – A Cultural Proficiency Implementation Model  
Key features
(1) Provides education leaders with a template for implementing Cultural Proficiency across an entire district or school.

(2) Provides a method for evaluating the impact of educational decisions on students' access to learning.

(3) Offers an explicit case study of a large, diverse school district that has successfully implemented Cultural Profiency to benefit all students including those who have been marginalized.

(4) Includes a range of activities and processes to inform professional development for personal growth as well as activities and processes to inform policy analysis and development that supports districts and schools that commit to doing what is necessary to educate all children in safe and healthy schools.

(5) Companion web site includes templates and reproducibles for use in PD. 




Sample Materials & Chapters


Chapter 1 - What Frames Us, Defines Us

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ISBN: 9781483388793

For instructors