Unpacking Multiple Realities of Rural School Politics

Nathan Brubaker

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


Helping youth understand and shape what happens in local life as a means of constructing attachment to place and prioritizing knowledge production over consumption is of increasing importance to educators interested in democracy. Promoting such aims in the face of competing pressures to conform to informal networks of power and control in schools can be challenging for any teacher, particularly novices. In this chapter, I examine how my past experiences as a beginning teacher in a rural elementary school in the Northeast USA, where I pioneered curricular and pedagogical innovations in a small rural community, helped inform my efforts to navigate political complexity as a teacher educator. Drawing from personal journals and documents from my years as a beginning teacher, alongside transcripts of recent conversations with former colleagues who helped shape the political climate of my rural context, I illuminate multiple realities of rural school politics. Fifteen years later, how do I un/knowingly re-experience the realities of marginalization, values, and place as a teacher educator? How have they influenced my pedagogical purposes, practices, and priorities? What is their broader relevance to rural teacher education, internationally, today?
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSelf-studies in Rural Teacher Education
EditorsAnn K Schulte, Bernadette Walker-Gibbs
Place of PublicationCham Switzerland
Pages101 - 121
Number of pages21
ISBN (Print)9783319174877
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Publication series

NameSelf-Study of Teaching and Teacher Education Practices

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