Ethnic diversity and school principals' professional knowledge


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Les Annales Scientifiques de la Faculté de Psychologie et des Sciences de l'Éducation de l'Université Alexandru Ioan Cuza
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This paper presents findings from a research on school principals in Canada. The qualitative data were gathered by semi-structured interviews (N=56) in three Canadian urban centres: Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal. Findings suggest that the main challenges regarding ethnic diversity in schools today are heterogeneity of origin, heterogeneity of socioeconomic status, inability to master the language, school-family collaboration, school delay and learning difficulties. Our findings suggest many links between these challenges. Principals also talked about school's capabilities regarding these challenges and pointed out three topics: lack of human and material resources in school boards, shortcomings in the teachers' initial training in universities, and school principals' intercultural skills. They brought out the self-taught character of their knowledge on ethnic diversity.
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