School Integration in Arizona's White Mountains
Reeck, Adam Nicholas
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Due to Arizona’s mandated open enrollment policy for public schools, Blue Ridge Unified School District’s (BRUSD) population of Native American students has increased by 148% over the last 12 years as students migrate into BRUSD from Whiteriver Unified School District (WUSD) on the Fort Apache Reservation. This research examines the short-term effects of school choice policy in BRUSD by addressing the following sub-problems: 1) What are the administrative and faculty perceptions of changes affecting BRUSD? 2) What are the measured changes affecting BRUSD? Key findings include decreases in some test scores while other scores increase. Also, faculty is convinced the school is moving in positive directions as it deals with other comprehensive changes. Recommendations include that BRUSD incorporate best practices in schooling diverse populations and in Native American pedagogy. The overall conclusion is that BRUSD has a unique opportunity to provide a quality education for a diverse community of learners.