“You want me to do what?!” I said with mock disbelief. Some of my students were helping to plan our school’s annual spring break college tour where they visit universities up and down the east coast during their Easter vacation. They asked me if I would help chaperone their trip. I responded, “let me make… Continue reading Teachers, Do You Know Your Limitations? Let Me Tell You Some Of Mine!
While The Hate U Give is a best-selling book and top-rated film, I’m getting some real pushback from my administration about having my students read the book and see the film in my English Language Arts class, despite its obvious cultural and societal relevance. This confirms my premise that White administrators are often disconnected from… Continue reading The Hate I Get About “The Hate U Give.”
This is a guest post by Jose Romero, a high school senior in New York. He aspires to become a fifth-grade teacher, so he can give kids the support he received from his mentors and teachers of color. It has appeared in TNTP and on Education Post. For 10 years—the first decade I was in school—all… Continue reading NYC High School Student Explains Why A Diverse Teaching Force Matters — And What He’s Going to Do About It.
Last month late one Tuesday evening, my husband and I called a family meeting. The reason for this meeting was to inform our teenage son that he no longer had cell phone service. “You will have no access to texts or internet access just phone calls in case of emergencies”. The cause for this level… Continue reading My Son Says, “I Need My iPad for Homework.” How do I Keep My Kids From Being Held Hostage By Technology?
According to CNN, “a Texas charter school is apologizing after a teacher gave an assignment to an eighth grade American History class, asking students to list the positive aspects of slavery.” As outraged as I am, I wish I could write that what happened at Great Hearts Monte Vista School is an isolated incident —… Continue reading The First Step towards Achieving Educational Equity for Black Students Must Be Hiring More Black Teachers
New York City schools are plagued with deeply embedded racist practices and ideologies. From the huge disparity in the amount of teachers of color hired in comparison to their White counterparts, to the lack of diversity and inclusion of the vast contributions of all groups, not just White people, to the building of this country… Continue reading A Culturally-Responsive Education For NYC Students Is No Longer Optional! It Is A Must!
Yesterday, a student asked a colleague of mine why there isn’t a White History Month. The student, who happens to be Black, asked the question with all seriousness. I didn’t want my facial expression to give way to the 20-floor drop that my heart took to the pit of my stomach as soon as I… Continue reading Why “Black Panther” Is A “Must See” For All Black Students
For the past few weeks, every time I see the cover of a local New York City newspaper there are reports of incidents of blatant racism and discrimination against students of color. This week, sadly, is no exception. According to an article published this Monday in the Daily News, Liriano [a teacher in the NYC… Continue reading Even During Black History Month, Teaching Black History Is Demonized.
His name is Malcolm Xavier Combs. Yet he was allegedly pulled out of class, berated, and told by a school administrator at his school— Christ the King High School in Queens, NY — that he can’t have “Malcolm X” on his senior hoodie sweatshirt. According to the Daily News, Malcolm Xavier Combs wanted the name… Continue reading His Name is Malcolm Xavier Combs, aka “Malcolm X” — Whether You Like It Or Not.
(Alexandra Cohl is an academic and creative writer who is currently an MA English Literature candidate at The City College of New York. She is also a writing instructor to writers ages 6-18 and professional development program leader for in-school teachers at Writopia Lab, a national literacy nonprofit. Her fiction can be read in Luna… Continue reading Encouraging the Absurd or Uncomfortable: The Power of Validating Student Ideas