Teaching Guides

Rethinking Multicultural Education: Teaching for Racial and Cultural Justice

Teaching Guide. Edited by Wayne Au. Rethinking Schools. 2023 (3rd edition).
A Rethinking Schools collection of articles and lessons for multicultural, anti-racist, social justice education in K-12.

Themes: Education, Racism & Racial Identity

From book bans, to teacher firings, to racist content standards, the politics of teaching race and culture in schools have shifted dramatically in recent years. This 3rd edition of Rethinking Multicultural Education has been greatly revised and expanded to reflect these changing times, including sections on “Intersectional Identities,” “Anti-Racist Teaching Across the Curriculum,” “Teaching for Black Lives,” and “K-12 Ethnic Studies,” among others. Practical, rich in story, and analytically sharp, Rethinking Multicultural Education can help current and future educators as they seek to bring racial and cultural justice into their own classrooms.

ISBN: 9780942961409 | Rethinking Schools


While many folks have abandoned the term multicultural education in favor of social justice, anti-bias, anti-racist, and/or anti-oppressive education, this collection reminds us that no matter the terminology we use, highlighting the experiences of the marginalized is vital to our collective liberation. From uplifting decolonization, Black history, and queer joy to critiquing capitalism and offering a beautiful and often heartbreaking array of personal narratives and classroom examples, this volume is necessary reading for educators committed to offering young people the education they deserve. — Noreen Naseem Rodríguez, Assistant Professor of Elementary Education and Educational Justice at Michigan State University, co-author of Social Studies for a Better World and Teaching Asian America in Elementary Classrooms

Rethinking Multicultural Education is both thoughtful and timely. As the nation and our schools become more complex on every dimension–race, ethnicity, class, gender, ability, sexuality, immigrant status–teachers need theory and practice to help guide and inform their curriculum and their pedagogy. This is the resource teachers at every level have been looking for. — Gloria Ladson-Billings, Kellner Family Chair in Urban Education Emerita, University of Wisconsin-Madison and author of Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children.

If you are an educator, student, activist, or parent striving for educational equality and liberation, Rethinking Multicultural Education: Teaching for Racial and Cultural Justice will empower and inspire you to make a positive change in your community. — Curtis Acosta, Founder, Acosta Latino Learning Partnership and Assistant Professor, University of Arizona


On December 13, 2023, Rethinking Multicultural Education editor Wayne Au and Rethinking Schools editors Jesse Hagopian, Dyan Watson, Bill Bigelow, Linda Christensen, Ursula Wolfe-Rocca, Moé Yonamine, and Cierra Kaler-Jones hosted a launch and celebration of the third edition of this Rethinking Schools book on bringing racial and cultural justice to the classroom. Check out the recording of the event below.