Organizing for Change: Latinx Im/migrant Parents, School Decision-Making, and the Racial Politics of Parent Leadership in School Reform

Verónica N. Vélez

Abstract


This article draws on a multi-year, participatory action case study of ALIANZA, a California-based Latinx im/migrant parent group. Grounded in Latina/o Critical Theory (LatCrit), this article focuses specifically on the development of political agency among ALIANZA members, highlighting organizational strategies aimed at school reform while strengthening counter-narratives to interrupt racist depictions that functioned to cast Latinx parents as “unfit” to serve as educational leaders. Data suggests that ALIANZA’s approach helped its members heal from past abuse and racist encounters, identify and speak out against injustice, and build a collective and shared political capital to leverage their voice in local reform efforts. The author concludes with implications for future research and practice, with specific recommendations for other educational leaders and those who train them.

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