All posts tagged: Racism

What is Equity in Education?

Equity is a topic that has been on everyone’s minds and lips lately and it has caused quite a lot of debate about what the term actually means. Here is the prevailing definition:   Equity is the purposeful unequal distribution of resources in order to obtain equal outcomes.  At first glance, that statement seems unfair. When I read that definition for the first time, I was similarly indignant, “How could anything other than equal be okay?” Here in the United States, we are socialized to believe that “All men are created equal” and are thus just as capable of achieving their goals as the next person. This is of course, not a reflection of the truth of systematic racism, but it is the shiny image we like to cling to. Despite the way the wording of that definition offends us, it is something we employ daily without a second thought. For example, three people go to an emergency room, one with a broken leg, one with a minor cut needing stitches, and one having a heart attack. The …

Anti-Racism Starts with I

A lot of people are now sharing memes, videos, and posts about how appalled they are. They are expressing sadness and outrage at the horrendous murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police. I see a lot of fingers being pointed. Pointed at the police and the officer himself calling them racist. And to be completely honest, that is counter-productive. In fact, that actually helps perpetuate the myth that racism is something that “bad people” do. The reality is that racism is in all of us. Racism is a system. The good intent these people have when sharing these posts is far outweighed by the impact made by perpetuating the myth that continues to plague the world.  A lot of people are wondering what they can do, they feel helpless, and it’s understandable. So I have made a short list of things that do and don’t work.  What doesn’t help: 1) It’s fairly safe to say that posting a message saying “do something” is about as helpful as a used diaper. But beyond being not helpful, the …

Can we talk about holidays? Again

Every year, starting around Halloween it never fails that some teachers get their long underwear in a bunch over not being able to celebrate their holidays like the “good ole’ days.” Ladies and gents, I have seen every flipping argument in the book. From it’s my culture to it’s a free country, it never fails that we have teachers still fighting for them to flaunt their beliefs into the faces of their students. Let’s get real here, you typically don’t decorate your classroom for yourself. Everything you do is in some way connected to sending a message to your students. When you put words up on a word wall, you’re saying that these words are important. When you decorate with fall leaves, you’re setting the theme to seasonal. When you are putting up images of a Christmas tree, you’re saying that Christmas is important. What does this tell our students who don’t celebrate Christmas? What is the real outcome? Recently, I was in a discussion where the now few years old argument against saying happy holidays …