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Abstract

One of the most notable aspects of democracy in schooling lies in the challenge of schools to prepare individuals with the skills to participate and deliberate with others who have varying beliefs and worldviews. Deliberation and dialogue are seen as core components for academic achievement and cross-cultural connections between English language learners (ELLs) and native English speakers. I analyze the notion of deliberative democracy in English language education as a way to promote a certain type of education that would foster ELL inclusion as well as expand the perspectives of native English speakers. I argue that this type of education would not only foster inclusion in the classroom but also prepare ELLs for meaningful democratic participation. By examining the role of deliberation in creating democratic classrooms, alternative ways of knowing become more evident as teachers raise their awareness about the ways that culture and language play out in everyday life and academic work.

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