Justice for Black Students
Black Principals Matter
Published: August 2022
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Published: August 2022

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Published: August 2022
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6" x 9"
Language: English

A 2023 SPE Outstanding Book Award Winner

In Justice for Black Students: Black Principals Matter, Kofi Lomotey begins with a two-pronged premise: (1) Black students do not receive a quality education in US public (or private) schools, and (2) Black principals, like Black teachers, can make a positive impact on the academic and overall success of Black students. Through the chronicling of his own work over 50 years—as a practitioner and an academic—Lomotey puts forth this argument with a focus on Black principals. In this book, he positions his 1993 coining of the term ethno-humanism—a role identity which he attributes to successful Black principals—as a fundamental/critical component of the leadership of these principals. In reprinting three of his earlier articles and sharing new information (including a review of the literature on Black male principals), he provides a broad-based description of this role identity and then links it to the more recent concepts of culturally responsive/culturally relevant teaching/pedagogy and culturally responsive/culturally relevant school leadership, before describing the implications for Black students of his own work and of other research that has been conducted on Black principals. This volume is essential reading for all educators interested in seeing a significant improvement in the academic and overall success of Black students. Preservice teachers, practitioners, and administrators will find enormous value in the book’s message.

Perfect for courses such as:  Introduction to Education │ Leadership for Equity and Social Justice in Education │ Black Education │ Multicultural Education │ School Leadership │ Culturally Responsive Leadership

Table of Contents:


Sonya Douglass

Kofi Lomotey

Part One: My Early Work
1. My Beginnings: New York City, Oberlin, and Stanford

2. Black Principals for Black Students: Some Preliminary Observations

3. African American Principals: Bureaucrat/Administrators and Ethno-Humanists

Part Two: Issues of Gender

4. Research on the Leadership of Black Women Principals: Implications for Black Students

5. The Leadership of Black Male Principals: What the Research Tells Us

Part Three: Justice for Black Students (and People): Ethno-Humanism and Cultural Responsiveness

6. Ethno-Humanism: Extending its Significance

7. Culturally Responsive Pedagogy/Teaching

8. Culturally Responsive School Leadership

9. What Does This All Mean for Black Students (and Black People)?

Linda C. Tillman

About the Author


Information subject to change up until publication date.

Reviews & Endorsements:

“Part autobiographical, part historical, part instructive, and all engaging enjoyment makes this volume a rare treat for the reader who gets to learn closely more about the intellectual giant Kofi Lomotey’s culturally rich beginnings, his brilliant research on Black principals, and his compassion for Black children. Captured within is an instructive approach that drove Lomotey to confidently make an impact for Black children by challenging deficit views early in his career and endeavoring to eradicate them by leading schools, even as he studied at Stanford. This thoughtful tome also includes an appreciated presentation of his earliest scholarship with exciting current connections to culturally responsive school leadership, confirming that it should be required reading for ALL educational leadership students. It will be for mine.“

Mark Gooden, Christian A. Johnson Endeavor Professor in Educational Leadership, Teachers College, Columbia University

“In Justice for Black Students: Black Principals Matter, Kofi Lomotey pulls together a half-century of his research on Black male and female principals. Both his experience as a principal and as a scholar in the field make this book a signal contribution to the literature of a key, but often under-rated, position in the practice of schooling in the U.S.”

Larry Cuban, Professor Emeritus of Education, Stanford University

“For a definitive overview of the research on Black principals, Justice for Black Students: Black Principals Matter is a must read. Professor Kofi Lomotey examines the research on Black principals conducted over 40 years. Covering the earliest research on the topic through the most contemporary, Lomotey explores several frameworks used to understand Black principals' practice and does not neglect the critical role of gender. Across several chapters, combining empirical research, reviews of the literature, and questions to consider, he takes the reader on a journey through the research on Black principals. This expedition takes place against a backdrop of his life experiences. Lomotey does for the scholarship on Black principals what others have done for Black teachers.”

Michèle Foster, Professor and Henry Heuser Jr. Endowed Chair, University of Louisville

“In Justice for Black Students: Black Principals Matter, Dr. Lomotey offers a compelling view of how and why culture is important for school leadership. As he pulls together his journey and much of his life's academic works, he masterfully guides readers to consider why school leaders do the work they do, and to ponder their greater purposes and commitments. Researchers and practitioners alike will find useful the discussion questions, and the invitation to think of who they are, and what redeeming qualities they may have, as leaders. This is most palpable in Dr. Lomotey's reflections and synthesis on ethno-humanist school leadership -- a concept that he coined, and that would go on to reshape our entire field. What is perhaps most promising is that Justice for Black Students: Black Principals Matter offers school leaders, university professors and educators another chance to offer a humanizing and fulfilling educational experience to Black students. It is brilliant and should be read and used widely!”

Muhammad A. Khalifa, Professor, Department of Educational Studies, The Ohio State University

“In the opening of this much anticipated text, Dr. Lomotey takes us on a journey beginning with the personal by telling his own life story and how it serves as the foundation for his work in the field and frame for this text. This critical choice sets the reader up for a journey into his genius and how he masterfully explicates the contributions of -- and need for -- the Black principalship in practice and in research. This is an amazing and much needed work for the field of educational leadership and beyond.”

Judy A. Alston, Director & Professor, Doctoral Program in Leadership Studies, Ashland University