Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Education (Ph.D)


Administrative and Instructional Leadership

First Advisor

Seokhee Cho

Second Advisor

Jenny Yang

Third Advisor

Catherine DiMartino


Culturally relevant teaching is proposed as a powerful method for increasing student achievement and engagement and for reducing achievement gaps. Nevertheless, the research demonstrating its effectiveness consists primarily of case studies of exemplary classrooms. This research sought to find any disparities that may arise due to challenges in equity policies by examining teachers’ racially conscious belief in operationalizing culturally responsive teaching. Due to its constructivist nature, culturally relevant pedagogy (CRP) approach relies on the beliefs and attitudes of educators with respect to cultural efficacy, their view-points of the world and its cultures and their dispositions on race. The Culturally Responsive Teaching Self-Efficacy (CRTSE; Siwatu, 2007) scale and the Color-Blind Racial Attitude Scale (CoBRAS; Neville et al., 2000) along with teachers’ race and academic subject were used to gauge teachers input for possible relationships and to answer the research questions. Study participants consisted of 195 in service public school teachers taken from two school districts located in the suburbs of Eastern New York. Comparative and correlational analysis were utilized to explore the correlation between teachers’ self-reported information. Findings revealed significant differences amongst teachers’ racial groups with regards to color blinded racial attitude (CoBRAS) and all of CoBRAS factors; Unawareness of Racial Privilege, Unawareness of Institutional Discrimination and Unawareness of Blatant Racial Issues. The results also showed significance between African American teachers’ group levels in culturally responsive self-efficacy and color blinded racial attitude. Culturally responsive teaching demands that teachers have a critical attitude towards the social forces that generate inequality. Understanding teachers' experiences of culturally sensitive teaching and their racially conscious stance provides insight into the support structures and professional development that are needed for teacher self-efficacy. With modifications to this study, such as sample size and region, further analysis may bring a different response. There must be a continuation of lift and promotion of the race consciousness of educators in order to overcome their own cultural prejudices and tackle the structural origins of racism in school policies and practices.