Research News

UW’s Bal explains ‘Radical Possibilities for Culturally Responsive School Discipline’

March 23, 2015

UW-Madison’s Aydin Bal recently authored an article for the Equity Alliance Blog that’s headlined, “Beyond the Color of Discipline: Radical Possibilities for Culturally Responsive School Discipline.”

Bal is an assistant professor of special education who studies racial disproportionality and capacity building in local education agencies for systemic transformation.

Aydin Bal
As the lead-in to Bal’s blog post notes, his “recent research projects aim at developing culturally responsive intervention methodologies for ecologically valid, socially just, and sustainable transformations in schools. As a practitioner, Professor Bal has worked with youth from historically marginalized communities and refugees who experience behavioral difficulties. He is directing a statewide research project, Culturally Responsive Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports.”

Bal closes his detailed post by explaining: “The racialization of discipline or policing black and brown bodies in schools is a complex systemic problem that requires complex systemic solutions that are responsive to the experiences and interests of all local stakeholders. Any attempts to disrupt and transform an unjust education system and thus impact its outcomes require researchers, practitioners, families, and community members to engage in a sustained, critical dialogue as equal partners to develop and test ideas for systemic improvement (Bal, 2011, 2012a). In such reciprocal relationships, practice and research will inform each other generate what Anyon (2005) calls “radical possibilities” for building democratic schools from the ground-up with (not for) local stakeholders.”

But to learn the details of Bal’s work and its great potential, check out the entire blog post for free on Equity Alliance website.

The Equity Alliance is devoted to research and school reform efforts that promote equity, access, participation and outcomes for all students.