Fennimore, professor, Professional Studies in Education, has published an article called “Permission Not Required: The
Power of Parents to Disrupt Educational Hypocrisy” in the 2017 Review of Research in Education. This
journal, published on a yearly basis by the American Educational Research
Association, was edited by Maisha T. Winn and Mariana Souto-Manning.
of this year’s journal was “Disrupting Inequality through Education Research.” Authors with accepted proposals were expected
to write a critical essay in a selected area while also providing an extensive
review of research in that area. For
this volume, authors were also asked to confront existing educational research
that reinforced discrimination or inequality.
Fennimore’s article is
focused on literature documenting the experiences of nondominant and
minoritized parents who challenge injustice and inequity in the public schools
attended by their children. It interrogates hegemonic traditional approaches to
parent involvement that favor the school-based activities of white middle-class parents while ignoring or
silencing the efforts of nondominant parents to confront discriminatory
assumptions and unequal opportunities in public schools.
Fennimore, who was
formerly an urban public school parent for 18 years, included her own participant-activist-research
on nondominant parents who struggled for equal schooling in the article. She
challenged current educational researchers to realize that studies continually “proving”
the inferiority of nondominant parents and their children enhance and support bias
in teacher education and inequality in schools. Rather, she encouraged
researchers to be “worthy witnesses” to the struggles experienced by caring and
involved nondominant parents who must fight for equal educational opportunities
for their children in schools.
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