“Push it Real Good!”: The Challenge of Disrupting Dominant Discourses Regarding Race in Teacher Education

  • Kara Mitchell Viesca University of Colorado Denver
  • Cheryl Matias
  • Dorothy Garrison-Wade University of Colorado Denver
  • René Galindo University of Colorado Denver
  • Madhavi Tandon
Keywords: Teacher Education, Social Justice, Critical Race Theory


Despite efforts to redesign an urban teacher education program for social justice and equity, faculty became aware of racialized issues teacher candidates of color faced in the program.  Therefore, this study examined the perspectives of teacher candidates to learn about how race is impacting teaching and learning for pre-service teachers.  Overall, we discovered the dominant narratives, often called majoritarian stories (Love, 2004), were extremely difficult to disrupt and essentially remained largely intact for teacher candidates in our program.  In addition, we found that majoritarian stories helped to maintain a level of superficiality for teacher candidates regarding issues of race.  For this reason, we argue that there is a need to “Push it real good!” using Critical Whiteness to engage in deeper level work with teacher candidates in order to help develop strong teacher activists with the skills, dispositions, and knowledge necessary to substantially disrupt the inequitable status quo in education.