Affirming Diversity & Socio-Political Contexts: Reflections by Touro University Bilingual Certificate Candidate Paola Gomez, EDPN 671

EDPN 671 Theory and Practice of Bilingual and Multicultural Education

This course reviews the impact of historical, legal, sociological, and political issues in relationship to the education of culturally and linguistically diverse students. Students explore the evolution of attitudes regarding bilingualism and multiculturalism in the United States. Emphasis will be placed on developing multicultural competence as educators, with areas of focus including: cross-cultural communication in the classroom and with parents; how the language and culture of the home and the community impact student learning; cultural factors in the relationships between the school and the community. Models of multicultural and bilingual education will be presented and analyzed. Includes 10 hours of field work.

Mrs. Paola Gomez was born in the Bronx and raised partially in the Dominican Republic. She attended Hunter College where she received her degree in Music Performance and Touro College where she received her master’s in education. She is currently a teacher at P186X, where she hopes to integrate her bilingual skills acquired from Touro College’s bilingual education program.

Paola wishes to thank her family, her husband, Justin, and her professor, Dr. Jasmin Cowin, for her support and dedication to candidate learning during the summer semester 2022.

There is an overwhelming amount of research that confirms that an achievement gap does exist in our public education system. According to Nieto and Bode, “41 percent of whites are reading at grade level, only 15 percent of Hispanics and 13 percent of African Americans are at grade level. The gap worsens through the years: Black and Hispanics twelfth graders perform at the same level in reading and math as white eighth graders” (Nieto & Bode, 2018, p.9). The reason why this is happening is because the achievement of this group of students is related directly to the conditions and contexts in which these students learn.

Paola Gomez, Touro University Bilingual Certificate Candidate

Author: drcowinj

Education is our passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs only to the people who prepare for it today,” determined Malcolm X at the O.A.A.U.’s [Organization of Afro-American Unity] founding forum at the Audubon Ballroom. (June 28, 1964). (X, n.d.) Dr. Jasmin Bey Cowin a Fulbright Scholar, SIT Graduate, completed the Education Policy Fellowship Program (EPFP™) at Columbia University, Teachers College. Dr. Cowin served as the President of the Rotary Club of New York and Assistant Governor for New York State; long-term Chair of the Rotary United Nations International Breakfast meetings; and works as an Assistant Professor at Touro College, Graduate School of Education. Dr. Cowin has over twenty-five years of experience as an educator, tech innovator, entrepreneur, and institutional leader with a focus on equity and access to digital literacy and education in the Sub-Saharan Africa region. Her extensive background in education, administration, not-for-profit leadership, entrepreneurial spirit, and technology innovation provide her with unique skills and vertical networks locally and globally. Dr. Cowin participates fully in the larger world of TESOL academic discipline as elected Vice President and Chair-Elect for the New York State, NYS TESOL organization, for the 2021 conference. Ongoing research, expressed in scholarly contributions to the advancement of knowledge is demonstrated through publications, presentations, and participation in academic conferences, blogging, and other scholarly activities, including public performances and exhibitions at conferences and workshops. Of particular interest to her are The Blockchain of Things and its implications for Higher Education; Current Global Trends in TESOL; Developing Materials and Resources in Teaching English; E-learning; Micro and Macro-Methodologies in TESOL; E-Resources Discovery and Analysis; and Language Acquisition and the Oculus Rift in VR.

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