arneduncaninhaiti

First They Came For Urban Black and Latino Moms (For Arne Duncan)

Jose 25 Comments

A few months ago, I walked past a “successful” charter school here in Harlem, NY, speed-walking to get my school supplies for the coming school year. I noticed a huge crowd of mostly Black and Latino families all waiting to pick up their children when a taut, pony-tailed White man came out with a clipboard and yells, “Alright, parents, we …

Jose VilsonFirst They Came For Urban Black and Latino Moms (For Arne Duncan)
emperorssecondtransition

Excuse Me, Your Privilege Is Showing (White Privilege in Ed Reform)

Jose 31 Comments

It always starts when someone brings up a point about race within your “own” ranks. Whatever that means. I’m OK with taking on the role as education’s Race Man, but the more I write about it, the more prevalent these discussions become. It’s almost as if people are waiting for [insert name of favorite White leader / blogger / activist …

Jose VilsonExcuse Me, Your Privilege Is Showing (White Privilege in Ed Reform)
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Diversity and Openness at the Bammy Awards, From Errol Smith

Jose 2 Comments

An exchange flared by between Errol Smith, executive producer of the Bammy Awards in my post about race within the education reform movement. My point in highlighting the Bammys wasn’t to hate on it, but assure that, as someone vested in true diversity, I would spare no one, liberal or conservative, from facing racial issues with its participants or audiences. …

Jose VilsonDiversity and Openness at the Bammy Awards, From Errol Smith
A Man and His Elephant, by Paula Bronstein

Embracing The Elephant (Race and Education Reform)

Jose 18 Comments

When I first saw Michael Petrilli’s list of influential education policy tweeters, I laughed. As usual, it’s as important to see who’s left off the list as to see where they rank. We see through whichever lens is given to us at whatever time we read any piece, as well as create it, so this isn’t a personal attack on …

Jose VilsonEmbracing The Elephant (Race and Education Reform)
Questlove, of the Roots

Short Notes: Intersectionality of Race and Gender via Questlove

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A few notes: This graphic is what I try to tell people about teachers. We work all summer, just not necessarily with kids. [Upworthy] I didn’t have the heart to read this before, but Questlove’s letter about “not being shit” resonated with me on a deep level. [NYMag] Jamilah Lemieux wrote a thorough critique of Kim Foster’s rejoinder of the …

Jose VilsonShort Notes: Intersectionality of Race and Gender via Questlove
Mad, The Invisible Man

Invisibility and People Of Color in Education Reform

Jose 12 Comments

Whenever people ask me where I stand on education reform, I ask them where I should start. Obviously, issues of equity and access rank at the top of my list of ideas I love to emphasize, but I can also get into curriculum and teacher quality if / when we need to have that debate. I don’t always agree with …

Jose VilsonInvisibility and People Of Color in Education Reform
martin-luther-king-arrested

An Open Letter From The Trenches [To Education Activists, Friends, and Haters]

Jose 13 Comments

To my fellow education activists: I’ve come across a few pieces that concern me and others in the last few months, and we got some shit to talk about. On normal days, I wake up at 5:30am hellbent on kicking butt at work, metaphorically of course. The stirring in my belly long after my butter toast and coffee is the …

Jose VilsonAn Open Letter From The Trenches [To Education Activists, Friends, and Haters]
Chinua Achebe

Chinua Achebe and Finding The Language For My Experience

Jose 7 Comments

When Chinua Achebe passed away, my thoughts immediately took me to the fifth grade book fair. There, I found the cover of a book I found interesting. Knowing nothing about the actual book, reading level, or histories behind it, I decided to buy it for what was probably five bucks from my school’s library. Shortly after the book sale, we …

Jose VilsonChinua Achebe and Finding The Language For My Experience
Riot

Riot When You’re Black, Angry Need Not Apply

Jose 6 Comments

The newest truism goes: If you’re a group of color, you’re rioting. If you’re White, you’re protesting. If you’re multicultural, you’re marching. The recent so-called riots in Brooklyn serve as yet another example. For those of you unacquainted, concerned Brooklyn residents of all ages held a vigil and demonstration to protest the treatment of 16-year-old Kimani Gray, a gun-toting teen …

Jose VilsonRiot When You’re Black, Angry Need Not Apply
riots

Educators, You Might Be A Good, Racist Person Too

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Ta-Nehisi Coates has a message for good, honest folk. Read: But much worse, it haunts black people with a kind of invisible violence that is given tell only when the victim happens to be an Oscar winner. The promise of America is that those who play by the rules, who observe the norms of the “middle class,” will be treated …

Jose VilsonEducators, You Might Be A Good, Racist Person Too