In E.L. Brown & P. Gibbons (eds.) International Advances in Education: Global Initiatives for Equity and Social Justice, Vol. 2: Ethnicity and Race, pg 285-308. Information Age Publishing, 2011.
Under the prevailing deficit approach, students who are different from mainstream in terms of race, ethnicity, language, appearance, sexual orientation, children who come from low income families, from the wrong side of the tracks, or those labeled with any kind of ‘dis’ability, are considered less able to succeed in school. But the diversity of students can be used to enhance teaching and learning if we allow voices, experiences, lives, interests and strengths from outside of school to be brought into the school discourse. A pedagogy of abilities acknowledges and makes use of the myriad colors in every classroom to paint possibilities of meaningful education for all students.