Transforming School Culture – Chapter 6 Resources – The Fundamentalists (Part 1 – Who are the Fundamentalist Teachers?)

This is a series of posts on Transforming School Culture by Anthony Muhammad – On Audible and on Amazon. More from Dr. Muhammad on Twitter and on his website.

In this book, Dr. Anthony Muhammad shares his research on four categories of teachers found in schools. In Chapter 6, he discusses “Fundamentalists”. Fundamentalists are the teachers who are certain that what they are doing right now is best for all children. Below are some further resources on some of the key points found in the chapter. Even if this book is not on your reading list, the resources are valuable tools in helping others take an inclusive stance, where ALL children are capable and competent. What other resources can you share on these topics?

In Chapter 6, Anthony Muhammad states that Believers (those who know all children can and will learn) and Fundamentalists (committed to traditional hierarchical schooling approaches) are most important to managing and improving school culture. Since writing the book “Transforming School Culture“, Dr. Muhammad has attributed the inequity in the public education system to the social structure within the school and the struggle with ideologies and power within the culture.

How can schools with the same challenges end up with such different outcomes in reaching goals or failing to overcome obstacles? The answers are mainly sociological. The competing ideologies are seen in the cultures and sub-cultures within schools. Who carried the weight of influence determined who had the outcome.

Dr. Anthony Muhammad, PMP202

This is such an important statement for leaders to understand as we work toward a culture of inclusion in our publicly funded schools.

From Chapter 6 of “Transforming School Culture” (2nd Edition, Page 77)

In the Principals Matter Podcast, with Dr. Anthony Muhammad, we see the following characteristics shared.


Bill Ferriter asks some important questions about working with Fundamentalists in a school culture:

So how can school leaders fight back against the emotional arguments of the Fundamentalists in their schools?  What can Believers, who want to see [all] students succeed, do to push progressive practices forward?  How can we turn the obvious passion of Fundamentalists in more positive directions?

Bill Ferriter, Fighting Against Fundamentalism, 2009

If equity is a pillar of public education, what strategies can we provide school and system leaders with to shift a Fundamentalist school culture to one where educators strive to build their expertise in meeting the needs of ALL learners?

Which strategies have been successful in your practice?

United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child – in Child-Friendly Language.

Featured image shared on Unsplash by Ashley Whitlatch

Purposes of Public Education (Douglas Stewart)

Transforming School Culture

by Anthony Muhammad

Updated 2021-2022 Resources by Chapter.

Chapter 1: From Status Quo to True Reform

Chapter 2: The Framework of Modern School Culture

Chapter 3: The Believers

Chapter 4: The Tweeners (new teachers)

Chapter 5: The Survivors

Chapter 6: The Fundamentalists (Part 1: Who Are They?)

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *