The care ethic in an urban school
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The environment of urban schools can be characterized by high teacher turnover; high student drop out rates; low performance by students on standardized tests; and a shifting demographic in student population. New teachers graduating from teacher education pre-service programs will almost surely teach in urban schools with students from different socio-economic, racial, and ethnic backgrounds than themselves. Students in these urban school environments often do not feel a connection to their teachers or their schools. This study shares oral narratives from teachers, students, a principal, and staff members from a high school for recent immigrants in the South Central United States which defies these odds. The interviews focus on how care is experienced by the teachers and students and sheds light on how teachers and students define the practice of care. Further the study looks at how school leadership and policies can impede and enhance the practice of care in the school setting. Among the several major findings, it was found that teachers and students both have a need, even a longing, for connection. The results provide implications for classroom practice, professional development, school leadership & decision-making practices, school culture, technology use, and overall school performance.