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Teacher Barely Notices Mannequins In A Classroom Prank

Jose Vilson Jose 2 Comments

In today’s news, a prank goes horribly wrong when a group of students replaced themselves with mannequins only to notice the teacher kept teaching. “It was supposed to be a childish prank, but, when we looked through the classroom door, she just kept teaching like we were there,” said Juan Gomez, a student in her class. The school, under the city’s official department website, is classified as 90% free or …

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Educators Say The Darndest Things About Kids of Color

Jose Vilson Jose 14 Comments

“He deserves to have been shot.” When I logged into Facebook for the umpteenth time last week, I should have expected to read this. At any given moment, I’m reminded that we shouldn’t ever be desensitized to injustice and inhumanity, yet, I’ve grown so used to it that I deflect it, block it, or respond to it swiftly and concisely in the hopes that I don’t drain my energies that …

Men Explain Things To Women Too Often, In Education and Otherwise

Jose Vilson Jose 1 Comment

Audrey Watters: “There’s that very famous New Yorker cartoon: “On the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog.” The cartoon was first published in 1993 — fairly interesting, I think, because it shows that by the early 1990s, the Internet had achieved if not a popular appeal, then enough of one that those who read the New Yorker could chuckle about the reference. The cartoon demonstrates too this sense that we …

Some of the teachers from the NPR comments, getting out of school

If This Keeps Happening, The Teaching Profession Is Doomed

Jose Vilson Jose 15 Comments

Last week, NPR Ed interviewed me and four other teachers for its 50 Great Teachers Series in an article entitled: “5 Great Teachers On What Makes A Great Teacher.” I was gassed because they actually took the time to draw a cool sketch of me for the piece, and the drawing looks like me. Just as important was the fact that we actually took a reflective look at the teaching …

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Bad Teachers Everywhere, All The Time, Even You

Jose Vilson Jose 11 Comments

In my last post, there was a big conversation in other areas about this idea of “bad teachers” and whether I should have paid more attention to discussing “bad teachers.” Cameron Diaz notwithstanding, the term “bad teacher” is a super-sensitive topic, one I don’t wish to treat with kid gloves, but a fine-toothed comb, because it merits serious discussion, especially through a racial and class lens. But let’s this out …

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Bad Teachers [Running Out Of Time]

Jose Vilson Jose 22 Comments

A few questions to ask yourself before you talk to me about bad teachers. What is a bad teacher? Out of the dozens of teachers you’ve had, how many of them would you actually call “bad”? Are you successful because or despite those teachers? Did your school environment exacerbate or blunt the effect of the bad teacher? Would you have “made it” if the bad teacher was a good teacher? …

Homer Simpson Chokes Bart

When Teachers and Students Fight

Jose Vilson Mr. Vilson 3 Comments

The latest viral video comes out of Baltimore, MD, where the Orioles weren’t the ones swinging. This video, a shaky mess that needs watching and re-watching to fully get what’s happening, starts with a student pacing back and forth while the teacher makes a phone call to someone, presumably a parent. The fight ensues when the student throws a binder to the teacher’s face, prompting the teacher to charge at …

James Baldwin

Writing Yourself Right Out Of The Burning House

Jose Vilson Jose Leave a Comment

“Dear Self (& other writers)–If you’re not writing with the urgency of exile, what’s the point? Which is to say, your writing should convey so much immediacy, fire and risk that you chance being kicked out of something with each line. Your writing should make you fucking quake.” – Airea D. Matthews Kelly Wickham shared this quote with her friends recently and also commented that she thought about my recent …

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Race, Class, and Acceptability As A Connected Educator [Aspiring To Karen]

Jose Vilson Jose 8 Comments

Karen Lewis matters to me for a myriad of reasons, both personal and activist. She isn’t just the leader of the Chicago Teachers’ Union and the CORE caucus that took the education world by storm with fiery oratory and community-centered energy. She symbolizes a new vision for progressive education reform, one that speaks proactively about the education deforms with the nuance that only a Black woman such as herself can. …

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My History As An Elective

Jose Vilson Jose Leave a Comment

The first result from a Google Search I did on Indigenous Peoples’ Day was a racist rant from someone who clearly has a chip on their shoulder for the minimal advances that people of color have made in this country. It reminds me of an old adage used in my college days: white history is taught as a core course in college while other peoples’ history an elective. The idea …