A place for educators to find thought-provoking news, conversation and support for those who care about diversity, equal opportunity and respect for differences in schools
If you lined up all the small-minded people on the planet, the first thousand or so would probably be school board members. For proof of that, look no further than Wheatland, Wyoming.
The 2001 novel The Misfits by James Howe focuses on four friends trying to survive seventh grade. After running a gauntlet of teenage taunts and insults, this small group sets out to create a “No Name Day” at school.
A couple years ago, Chuck—my partner of 22 years—and I were invited to speak to a health class at a local high school. We were participating in a program that sends LGBT folks into middle and high school classrooms to promote tolerance by telling their stories of what it was like growing up.
Texas is in the throes of rewriting the curriculum standards for its K-12 textbooks. And that is something to be very, very worried about.
Every year around Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, the news media start quoting his “I Have A Dream” speech. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s a great speech – certainly one of the best ever given in the cause of civil rights.
That’s the term the man used – “Mississippi eyes.” He was describing how he saw California’s Imperial Valley after he had spent time as a civil rights activist in Mississippi and Alabama. He had been born and bred in the Imperial Valley, deep in California’s agricultural belt. But he had never understood the inequities or racism of life there until Mississippi taught him how to see.
You’re forgiven if you missed it.
Late last month, Congress passed and President Obama signed a bill that included text that “apologizes … to all Native Peoples for the many instances of violence, maltreatment, and neglect inflicted on Native Peoples by citizens of the United States.” Not only was news of the measure knocked from front pages by the health care debate and Tiger Woods, it was well-camouflaged within the 2010 defense appropriations bill.
As teachers and students return to school this week, it’s worth taking one last look back at 2009. We asked ourselves, “What five news stories most shaped diversity – and diversity education – in the classroom last year?” Here is our list. Feel free to share if you come up with a different one.