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Cultural Reciprocity in Special Education: Building Family?Professional Relationships [Paperback]

Maya Kalyanpur Ph.D. , Beth Harry Ph.D.

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Book Description

June 13 2012 1598572318 978-1598572315

To succeed in increasingly diverse classrooms, tomorrow's special educators need explicit training on working effectively with all families. Prepare the next generation of teachers with this accessible text, developed by two highly respected experts on cultural and linguistic diversity and inclusive education.


Ideal for use as a supplementary textbook in a wide range of courses related to special education, this book gives educators a practical framework forcultural reciprocity —a process that helps professionals and families examine their own values, respect each other's differences, and collaborate skillfully to benefit children.

Educators will learn how to

  • strengthen awareness of their own cultural identities and roles


  • explore how their values and beliefs might affect interactions with families


  • sidestep stereotypes by treating each family and situation as unique


  • ensure successful IEP meetings through effective cross-cultural communication


  • avoid "right versus wrong" assumptions about parenting styles and practices


  • understand how diverse families might viewkey special education goals —independence, individuality, and work


  • combine ideas from different value systems to arrive at solutions that work for everyone


  • challenge the ways in which mainstream culture shapes special education policies and practices

The authors draw on their own experiences and research to describe applications of cultural reciprocity, including reader-friendly textboxes and memorable personal anecdotes.


To give special educators a deeper, more nuanced understanding of cultural reciprocity, the text also includes three chapter-long case studies that further illustrate the process at work. Readers will learn from the challenges and successes of an African American researcher working with a group of teenage mothers; two teacher educators collaborating on the Special Educators Entering a Diverse Society (SEEDS) project; and an Asian Indian teacher educator leading a class of mostly Caucasian students.


A key text for future special educators—and a valuable resource for inservice training—this book will help teachers build strong collaborative relationships with diverse families and ensure that all children receive the best possible education.


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Review

"A unique and compelling textbook . . . facilitate[s] a deep understanding of the intricate connections between our upbringing, roles, experiences, and worldviews and most importantly, those of the families we serve." --Deborah Chen, Ph.D.

About the Author


Beth Harry, Ph.D., is a professor of special education at the University of Miami in Florida. A native of Jamaica, Beth graduated from St. Andrew High School in 1962 and went on to pursue her bachelor of arts and master's degrees at the University of Toronto and her doctorate at Syracuse University. Beth has been a teacher all of her adult life, including teaching English at the secondary and community college levels and special education at all levels. Beth's current work focuses on teaching and research related to disability, multicultural, and family issues. She lived in Trinidad for 12 years, where both her children—Melanie and Mark Teelucksingh—were born.



Maya Kalyanpur, Ph.D., has focused on teaching and research related to the needs and perspectives of families from culturally diverse backgrounds. In 1997, she received a postdoctoral fellowship at the Beach Center for Families and Disability at the University of Kansas at Lawrence, where the work documented in this book was carried out. She serves as a consulting editor for Mental Retardation and Critical Inquiry into Curriculum and Instruction. She was a classroom teacher and director of a private school for children with disabilities in New Delhi, India, before coming to the United States as a graduate student. She received her doctoral degree in special education from Syracuse University in 1994.

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