School Psychology Review

Issues And Problems In The Influence Of Culture On The Psychoeducational Needs Of African-American Children

Craig L. Frisby

pp. 532-551

Mini-Series: Understanding and Meeting the Psychological and Educational Needs of African-American and Spanish-Speaking Students

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Within the field of school psychology, consciousness of African-American cultural issues has led to many desirable outcomes. However, discussions concerning the influence of culture (as it relates to the psycho-educational needs of African-Americans) continue to be plagued by three major problems: (a) profound confusion over connotative meanings of the word “culture” and the nature of “cultural differences,” (b) writers’ propensity for undifferentiated stereotyping of African-Americans, and (c) the influence of ideological frameworks that hinder objectivity. It is suggested that school psychologists learn to anticipate ethnic/racial conflicts, reexamine their criteria for determining “expertise” in cultural matters, and overcome rigidities in their ideological beliefs.