You are here

Desegregating Ourselves

Desegregating Ourselves
Challenging the Biases That Perpetuate Inequities in Our Schools

Additional resources:

July 2024 | 176 pages | Corwin

Challenge the biases and beliefs at the root of disproportionality

Although the Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Brown v. Board of Education recognized the detrimental effects of racist ideology in American education, disproportionality and inequality persist in our schools. Desegregating Ourselves offers educators a framework for examining and disrupting the deficit-based biases and belief systems that undergird our education system and continue to harm minoritized students. This groundbreaking book examines the root causes of persistent disproportionality, including systemic inequality, color blindness, deficit thinking, and poverty disciplining–all of which create barriers to success for marginalized students. Features include:

  • An in-depth survey of race and racism in the American education system, its laws, and its policies, all of which perpetuate systemic inequality and harmful stereotypes
  • A practical framework for developing cross-cultural skills and dispositions that challenge our biases and promote educational equity
  • Concrete strategies for interrupting and replacing deficit-based thinking and prejudices
  • Powerful reflections based on survey data from over 4,000 educators, which vividly illustrate how our beliefs manifest in schools and in our treatment of students

Desegregating Ourselves is a critical guide for educators brave enough to address disproportionality by confronting the biases and belief systems that impact marginalized students. By learning to cultivate cross-cultural skills and dispositions, educators can realize the vision of educational equity for all students.

About the Author
Chapter 1: History and Background of Whiteness Used to Create Ethno-Racial Segregation
Chapter 2: The Fear of Losing the Standard: From 20th Century Desegregation to 21st Century Anti-Integration Movement
Chapter 3: Colorblindness Belief: Ignoring Race as a Strategy for Maintaining Social Desirability
Chapter 4: Deficit Thinking and Poverty Disciplining: Our Societal Fixation on Poverty
Chapter 5: Interrupting Bias-based Beliefs Built on Whiteness
Appendix 1: Reflecting on our Whiteness Exposure
Appendix 2: Shopping Cart List of Experiences: Everyday Colorblindness and Evasiveness
Appendix 3: Colorblindness Reflection Activity
Appendix 4: Shopping Cart List of Experiences: Everyday Deficit Thinking and Poverty Disciplining
Appendix 5: Deficit Thinking and Poverty Disciplining Reflection Activity
Appendix 6: Exploring our Current Cross-Cultural Lives, Skills, and Competencies
Appendix 7: Additional Cross-Cultural Activities
Appendix 8: Professional Development Template for Equity Belief Work (Leadership Tool)


“Dr. Edward Fergus is one of the nation's leading experts on racial disparities in education. For years he has not only identified patterns and causes of the problem but also helped schools to ameliorate these through thoughtful interventions. In this new book he expands his work in new directions challenging his readers to think deeply about how they may be implicated in the production of unequal treatment in our schools. For those who seek to be part of the solution, this book will be an invaluable resource.”

Dr. Pedro Noguera, Dean
Rossier School of Education

"In these trying times, educators are needing a book to guide the cultural repair they need to do of themselves as they work with students. Fergus once again gives educators the tools to work on unpacking and replacing the racial bias they bring to schools in order to meet our students where they are and give them a high quality education that celebrates differences, engages learners and leads to high levels of student achievement."

Dr. Meisha Porter, President and CEO
Bronx Community Foundation

For instructors

Please select a format:

Select a Purchasing Option

ISBN: 9781071888872