Degree Date


Document Type

Dissertation - Public Access

Degree Name

Ed.D. Doctor of Education

Academic Discipline

Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Harrington Gibson

Second Advisor

Tema Okun

Third Advisor

Mark Larsen


This program evaluation focuses on the teaching practices of one Chicago Public School math teacher who has demonstrated success over time in the achievement of African American students. The primary research question explored how educators and leaders can learn from best practice research and case studies of exemplary math instruction the instructional and pedagogical skills needed to work effectively with African American students. Employing a qualitative research methodology, with data gathered from teacher interviews and other stakeholders, and observations, this study identified key components to improve mathematics instruction and culturally proficient practices. Policy recommendations and implications illustrate the need for change in policy in addressing the content knowledge gap of mathematics teachers, in elementary school teachers, as well as a focus on culturally responsive pedagogy and practices to address and eliminate opportunity gaps in the educational system at the school district and state levels. The results from this case study demonstrate that it is possible to work effectively with African American students and for them to be confident and successful students. Recent changes in the Illinois School Code to address the need to better prepare educators in culturally responsive practices is another step that will help our state build capacity among those responsible for the teaching and learning of all their students.