Lawrence County School District Curriculum/Technology Teacher Coach Dr. LaRenda Harrison recently had her academic writing published in The Handbook of Research on Teachers of Color and Indigenous Teachers, which was edited by Conra Gist and Travis Bristol. The book is a publication of AERA- American Educational Research Association.
Dr. Harrison explains that her dissertation topic, Voice and Visibility: Induction Experiences of Minority Teachers in a Rural Mississippi School District, was read by the editors. They saw her work as a discussion point of what they wanted to include in the volume. A first of its kind, the Handbook addresses key issues and obstacles to diversity across the life course teachers' careers. It is designed to be an important resource to help bridge the gap between scholars, practitioners and policy makers.
The chapter contributed by Dr. Harrison deals with Human Resources and Induction. Through her studies, she found common themes of feelings of aloneness and invisibility among her study participants. She explained, "Research suggests that induction programming is prevalent in areas of business and industry, but often for new teachers or new-to-a-district teachers, such programming is minimal or non-existent."
Dr. Harrison had a passion for this research topic because she realizes that though minority educator numbers are waning, minority student populations are growing. "Students need to see reflected in others the possibilities within themselves," she said. "Seeing teachers of color for students of color does much to encourage and motivate them of their own abilities and possibilities."
She explained that the process of condensing her dissertation into a chapter was a "labor of love," but she feels humbled to have been selected to be a part of this work. She dedicated her efforts to her mother and to her late father, who she said was her biggest cheerleader in her work.
Those interested in the Handbook can visit the AERA website or Google Search the complete title for more information.