immigration Archives - The Jose Vilson

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Short Notes: With Tears and Cheers

by Jose Vilson on July 7, 2013

in Short Notes

Mona Eltahawy

Mona Eltahawy

A few notes:

  • Edutopia highlights five, count em, FIVE books I think you should read. Just go. Read em if you haven’t already. [Edutopia]
  • When discussing the path of citizenship, this is what really matters. Five fifths human. [Los Angeles Times]
  • The New York Times editorial board thinks there should be changes made to the way we treat schools in New York City, but don’t propose anything that takes it too far from where Bloomberg took it. [New York Times]
  • NYC Educator reluctantly endorses Bill Thompson. The jury is still out for me, but my vote could swing the mayoral race like 20 percentage points. I better get on this. [NYC Educator]
  • Dear Common Core dissenters: you might want to take a look at what this website’s saying about the CCSS and Black students. Especially #4 and #2. I’d rather not get confused with this group. [Central Illinois and Beyond]
  • These 33 teachers who got the last laugh cracked me the hell up. Buzzfeed wins again. [Buzzfeed]

Quotable:

When I talk about the Muslim Brotherhood in the U.S., I like to compare them to what I call the Christian Brotherhood in the U.S. — and this is the religious right and conservative men in this country who are successfully trying to roll back reproductive rights. I always bring up Wendy Davis and what happened in Texas. And I say that Governor Rick Perry is an example of the Christian Brotherhood in this country. What they have in common is, the religious right — and especially the men in the religious right — are obsessed with our vaginas. And I would say stay away from my vagina unless I want you in there. I bring Wendy Davis in Texas in because it doesn’t help to say “over there” and “over here.” We have to look at women’s rights, and the successive fights toward reproductive rights — the Beijing platform from 1995, I was in Beijing at the global conference: If we had a global conference today, we would not achieve a third of what we achieved in Beijing because of this brand of conservatism, especially regarding reproductive rights.

- Mona Eltahawy in Aspen Ideas Fest 2013, when asked a question about women’s reproductive rights in the United States

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Short Notes: What Fathers Watch

by Jose Vilson on June 16, 2013

in Short Notes

little_einsteins

A few notes:

Quotables:

re: Little Einsteins and parentless cartoons …

Jose, who wishes all the fathers out there a great day ….

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Wherever The DREAM May Lead Us [An Education For All]

by Jose Vilson on October 25, 2012

in Jose

DREAM girl

Recently, the conversation around the use of the word “illegal immigrant” came to a precipice when the New York Times’ public editor said there was nothing wrong with using the phrase. Writers like Jose Antonio Vargas and institutions like Univision chimed in, and rightly so. “Illegal immigrant” suggests that the immigrant themselves is illegal. The very term suggests that these men, women, and children who migrate live an existence of illegality, whereas “undocumented worker,” the better alternative, suggests that the person crossing the border actually works here but has not (yet) filled out all the forms to become a full American citizen. The former puts the burden of proof on the individual, whereas the latter highlights a systemic issue.

We still have discussions about students in this situations in black and white terms. Either they all leave or they can all stay … with a caveat. Or a few. For instance, they can’t be gang bangers and drug dealers. And they can stay if they spend thousands of dollars trying to get through college. Or enlist in an army to protect a country that won’t necessarily protect them. Many of them (or their parents) still pay taxes under different social security numbers and work in some of the spaces many others won’t, but with little nuance in our discussions, we don’t get to hear about their actual lives.

More importantly, we as teachers can’t actually tell how our students got onto our rosters … until it’s too late. By too late, I mean, we end up liking them.

Educators who work in high-English Language Learner (ELL), high-poverty environments get that we as educators have to develop a relationship with them before getting to the academics. You should do so for all classrooms, but the expectation for us to build a comfort level with our kids makes a big difference. We get to know their quirks, their pains, their scents, and their styes. We find the timbre in their voices, their sauntering and hopping through the hallways, the funny way they write their q’s, the first topic they discuss when they don’t get the task, and how loud they pop their pieces of gum.

Soon after, we get to know their deficiencies in acquiring the language, the ways they use their prior knowledge to construct the new, the funny way they mix English and words in their native language. And we laugh because it might actually make more sense if every word we wrote in one language actually meant exactly the same thing in English. If we know their native tongue, we switch up our voices to a “I know I’m not supposed to do this” whisper, but when prompted again to speak in that tongue, you decline in a “I already told you I wasn’t supposed to” sorta way. Then, we insist on speaking to their parents in whichever language they prefer in a “I told your child I wouldn’t do this anymore, but you’re cool” sorta way.

We hope the best for them. We want them to think of positive aspirations and fulfill them. We tend to them. We know their names for a year. Two or three if we’re lucky. We see them grow. We clap for them a little harder in ceremonies, because they’re ours.

We can’t tell by any of this whether the students have that allow for their “right” to be here. We can only hope that this country gives them the opportunity to let them follow their dreams, wherever they may lead.

Jose, who thinks today is the last day for voting for the #LATISM Awards voting. Thank you to those who continue to support.

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You May Say I’m a DREAMer [Where We Belong]

June 12, 2012 Jose
dream_act_capital

An interesting story came across my desk this morning. Daniela Peraez, the valedictorian of her class, almost had to rescind her citizenship status over complications with the migra. This particular paragraph stuck with me: Despite her uphill legal battle that lies ahead, Pelaez will head to Dartmouth College in September on a full scholarship. As […]

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Gov. Jan Brewer Has A Mind Of Her Own … Kinda

April 18, 2011 Jose
Gov_JanBrewerR-Arizona1

Let’s ignore for a second that Arizona has been the hot bed for ultra-conservative rogue policy for the last few years, and still hasn’t done a thing about those undocumented immigrants imprisoned in what networks would have us believe are cushy, metallic lounges. Gov. Jan Brewer, whose administration has been lauded for her right-wing activist […]

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Another Reason Why Some Educators Won’t Talk About Race

March 17, 2011 Jose
Luis Ramirez and Three of His Murderers

No, you’re going to get into race at length. Or any other real world issue for that matter. Because you’ve made your blog just as someone in the edublogosphere prescribed: edu-tech here, ed policy there, a response to the latest trend sprinkled in. You’re doing well for yourself and your readers skyrocket. The only controversy […]

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