The purpose of this study was to evaluate the common assumption that teachers of color (TOC) are more culturally competent than White teachers by assessing physical education teachers’ cultural competency. A secondary purpose was to ascertain the possible differences in cultural competence levels of White teachers in diverse school settings versus those in more racially homogenous schools. One hundred and ninety physical education teachers from two states in the southeastern U.S. completed a demographic questionnaire and the Multicultural Teaching Competency Scale (MTCS) (Spanierman et al., 2006). The MTCS consists of two subscales; multicultural teaching knowledge (MTK), and multicultural teaching skills (MTS). MANCOVA analyses indicated significant differences with TOC scoring higher in both MTK and MTS than White teachers. Results also indicated that White teachers in city school settings scored significantly higher in MTK than those from more rural school. Results and implications for teacher preparation and professional development are discussed.
Harrison is with the University of Texas at Austin—Curriculum & Instruction, Austin, TX. Carson is with Louisiana State University—Kinesiology, Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Burden is with the University of Central Florida—Child, Family and Community Sciences, Orlando, Florida.