The problem addressed in this study was that leaders at an urban elementary school had not examined the implementation of culturally proficient practices, nor the challenges, barriers, or support needed for implementation. The purpose of the study was to inform instructional and leadership practices involving culturally proficient instruction. This was a mixed methods study with 24 teachers involving the examination of responses to 3 data collection instruments as well as document analysis of school policy, vision, mission, leadership team structures, and the teacher handbook. Three questions were answered through the study: (a) What culturally proficient instructional practices, if any, do teachers report implementing in classrooms in an elementary school in Nevada? (b) What challenges and or barriers, if any, do these teachers perceive in implementing culturally proficient instruction? and (c) What support do these teachers perceive is needed, if any, for implementing culturally proficient instructional practices? Findings indicated that participating teachers (a) embraced the equity comprising cultural proficiency and related instructional practices, (b) identified challenges/ barriers to culturally proficient practices, and (c) identified 3 categories of support that may enhance culturally proficient practices. Conclusions of the study reflect that teachers have implemented cultural proficiency and culturally proficient instructional practices. They are, however, faced with challenges and or barriers and are in need of continued administrative support. Furthermore, the teacher handbook is silent on culturally proficient policies and practices. Four recommendations were identified for policy and practice: (a) increasing the leadership focus involving culturally proficient practices, (b) focusing leadership on transformational perspectives to benefit stakeholders, (c) promoting opportunities to examine stereotypes and conflict resolution, and(d) revising the teachers' handbook to include culturally proficient policies and practices. Three recommendations were identified for future study: (a) continued study at the school to determine additional areas wherein leadership support is needed, (b) the implementation of action research to examine espoused values of cultural proficiency and culturally proficient instruction in relation to instructional practices, and (c) continued study in the implementation of cultural proficiency and culturally proficient instruction to identify applications of theory and practice specifically beneficial for the Individual Educational Program (IEP) students.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (EdD) -- Organizational leadership; Education, Elementary -- Nevada -- Evaluation; Education -- Cross-cultural studies -- Methodology; Educational evaluation

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Jungwirth, Linda