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Left behind but not left alone: testimonies of Black preservice experiences with white cooperating teachers

Robert P. Robinson (John Jay College of Criminal Justice, New York, New York, USA)
Stephanie Patrice Jones (Grinnell College, Grinnell, Iowa, USA)

Journal for Multicultural Education

ISSN: 2053-535X

Article publication date: 24 October 2023

Issue publication date: 2 July 2024




The purpose of this study was to examine the preservice educational narratives of Black English teachers in an effort to determine their experiences within teacher education programs with assigned white cooperating teachers.


Drawing upon Black storytelling, testimony and breath in narrative analysis, this study showcases how Black preservice teachers navigated regularized surveillance and abandonment as part of student teaching practicum.


The authors argue that, in response to their treatment, these Black preservice teachers created resistance strategies as a way to fill the mentorship void and sustain their own future teaching careers.


The literature on Black preservice teachers does the critical work of examining how they experience their racial, linguistic and gendered identities in the classroom; however, this study focuses on their experiences with white cooperating teachers – an underresearched area in the past 10 years.



Stephanie P. Jones: The author would like to thank the co-author, Prof. Robert Robinson, for the invaluable insight and for always connecting them to the legacy of Black teachers. The author also wants to acknowledge the scores of Black teachers and mentors who are doing the work on behalf of the children in their classrooms.

Robert P. Robinson: The author would like to thank Dr. Stephanie Jones for the continued leadership in uncovering antiblack curriculum violence. Thank you to the participants for their commitment to amplifying Black teacher voices. Thanks to the former department – Search for Education, Elevation, and Knowledge (SEEK), and the new department – Africana Studies. A major thanks to the Office of Academic Research at John Jay College for funding our licensing fees.


Robinson, R.P. and Jones, S.P. (2024), "Left behind but not left alone: testimonies of Black preservice experiences with white cooperating teachers", Journal for Multicultural Education, Vol. 18 No. 3, pp. 289-301.



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