Educational Salvation: Integrating Critical Spirituality in Educational Leadership

  • Carlos R. McCray Fordham University
  • Floyd D. Beachum Lehigh University
  • Christopher Yawn City College of New York


Improving education for students in K-12 urban settings remains a slow-paced and difficult task, with many successes in student learning being episodic at best. Disconnect between government mandates to improve schools and persistent societal issues of poverty and inequity act to increase stress on teachers and educational leaders working in urban schools. Drawing upon the strengths of the African-American community and its collective historical experiences, this study explores creative ways to integrate spirituality in the education of students in urban schools. The authors begin by addressing the contextual and structural issues facing urban schools. They then explain the benefits of integrating the four elements of critical spirituality—critical self-reflection; deconstructive interpretation; performative creativity; and, transformative action—in educational leadership to enhance their work in urban communities.

Author Biographies

Carlos R. McCray, Fordham University
Associate Professor
Floyd D. Beachum, Lehigh University

Associate Professor

How to Cite
McCray, C. R., Beachum, F. D., & Yawn, C. (2012). Educational Salvation: Integrating Critical Spirituality in Educational Leadership. Catholic Education: A Journal of Inquiry and Practice, 16(1), 90-114. Retrieved from