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“The Year of the Black Girl”: Celebrating Black Girlhood, Confronting Challenges & Exploring Advocacy & Action

Thu, April 12, 2:00 to 3:30pm, Hilton, Third Floor, Duluth Room

Session Type: Paper Symposium

Integrative Statement

In the field of education, the developmental trajectories of Black girls have been defined by a “single story” of deficit. With this context in mind, we (re)frame narratives of Black girls in education by adopting asset-based frameworks to provide Black girls with a seat at the table and ensure that their unique needs and lived experiences are amplified and hidden no more. This symposium convenes interdisciplinary Black women scholars to present four papers that examine (1) the unique experiences of Black girls in contemporary public schools and social, cultural and institutional factors that stress or support Black girls, (2) the persistence and resistance of academically gifted Black students towards academic advancement despite enduring experiences of racialized bullying via the acting white phenomenon, (3) the influences of school leaders’ support, or lack thereof, on Black girls’ STEM training, and (4) the characteristics of after school programs that foster positive development in Black adolescent girls and how families, schools, and community efforts can work together to promote positive development in Black adolescent girls. Across and within each of the papers, implications for research, policy and practice are discussed. Taken together, these findings provide evidence of the importance of centering the unique needs and lived experiences of Black girls in order to promote positive adolescent development.

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