1. Differences in academic achievement levels disappear between males and females, dominant and oppressed group members, and upper-middle-class and low-income students.
2. Students are able to use their own cultural resources and voices to develop new skills and to critically explore subject matter.
3. Students learn to recognize and confront inequities in school and society.
4. Cultural differences are treated as differences, rather than as deficiencies that must be addressed in compensatory programs.
5. The faculty, administrators, and other staff see themselves as learners enhanced and changed by understanding, affirming, and reflecting cultural diversity.
6. Teachers and administrators are able to deal with questions of race, intergroup relations, and controversial realities on an objective, frank, and professional basis.
7. The composition of the faculty, administration, and other staff accurately reflects the pluralistic composition of the United States.
8. The school curriculum incorporates the contributions of many cultural groups and integrates multiple perspectives throughout it.
9. Instructional materials are free of biases, omissions, and stereotypes.
In ranking these characteristics, I loosely categorized them into three groups: student outcomes, faculty/staff makeup, and instructional materials or curriculum. The student outcomes are obviously the most important thing. My number one characteristic, “differences in achievement…disappear” is the goal of a multicultural school environment. It should be a place where every student can succeed. The next group of characteristics has to do with the teachers and staff, especially how they deal with students. The school is made up of the teachers and administrators, so the whole school will follow their example. The final group of characteristics has to do with the curriculum and instructional materials. This is the easiest thing for a school to change but...