Ethnic Studies in Arizona: The Story You Might Have Missed on New Year’s Day

Jose 6 Comments

On January 1st, 2011, Arizona instituted a set of directives against certain segments of educational curricula in the state. This bill follows the already tenuous relationship between underrepresented people in their state and their government, with officials like Governor Jan Brewer in the forefront. People reporting on the bill have called it a “ban on ethnic studies,” a misleading title …

Jose VilsonEthnic Studies in Arizona: The Story You Might Have Missed on New Year’s Day
Dominican Republic and Haiti from Space

My Race: Defining The Undefinable

Jose 17 Comments

For those that haven’t pieced it together from the plethora of race essays I’ve written here and elsewhere, I self-identify racially as a Black Latino. I’ve found it’s probably the most appropriate title for this idiosyncratic, deeply political experience I carry. It was probably what I might call the difference between compromising my understanding of race in this country and …

Jose VilsonMy Race: Defining The Undefinable

The Idea of Race As A Number Line

Jose 1 Comment

I recently had the delightful experience of hanging out with the alumni of Nativity Mission Center, the Lower East Side based Catholic middle school, most of whom I only get to see once a year at these events. This time felt different in a good way; most of their discussion was around my blog and how they’d occasionally read my …

Jose VilsonThe Idea of Race As A Number Line
Kendall, Teaching

Greg Michie and Why He’s a White Teacher Who Gets It (Whereas You May Not)

Jose 14 Comments

In an effort to actually read the books people give me, I finally finished the book Holler If You Hear Me by Gregory Michie. When I first looked at it, I rolled my eyes hard beause a White teacher was using the obvious Tupac reference. When some White people want to get Black people involved, they use a reference from …

Jose VilsonGreg Michie and Why He’s a White Teacher Who Gets It (Whereas You May Not)
Fuck That Shit

The Token’s Worth More Than You Bargained For

Jose 3 Comments

My favorite part about the GE Futures in Education Conference in Orlando wasn’t the wonderful 85+ degree weather, the beautiful accommodations (including free wi-fi), or even the wonderful speakers ranging from Jon Saphier and Robert Marzano to Ron Ferguson and David Jackson. It was my eclectic crew of math and science teachers who I broke bread with, hated on multiple …

Jose VilsonThe Token’s Worth More Than You Bargained For
twilight zone

Voices of Concerned Educators: The Twilight Zone and How Affluence Perpetuates the Achievement Gap [C. Marquez]

Jose 5 Comments

“You’re traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound, but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination. That’s the sign post up ahead, your next stop…The Twilight Zone!” ~Rod Serling As an elementary school administrator, I currently work in the Twilight Zone. This environment is completely foreign to me. …

C. MarquezVoices of Concerned Educators: The Twilight Zone and How Affluence Perpetuates the Achievement Gap [C. Marquez]
Damage after Hurricane Katrina, School Bus

On Why Your Colorblindness Can Strike Me As Covertly Racist ( #EdChat Edition )

Jose 7 Comments

Let me make it plain: conversations in too many sectors have this strange relationship with race these days, and by strange, I mean covertly racist. This sentiment is best exemplified by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan’s latest quote about New Orleans (thanks, Fred Klonsky): “I think the best thing that happened to the education system in New Orleans was Hurricane …

Jose VilsonOn Why Your Colorblindness Can Strike Me As Covertly Racist ( #EdChat Edition )
Black in America

The Tourist (or Not That Black in America)

Jose 12 Comments

Sure enough, I didn’t catch most of CNN’s Black in America 2 special. I’ll most likely catch that sometime in the future; reruns prevail over original programming even on a 24-hour news channel. I caught bits of it and found inspiration in the story of Steve Perry, a Black high school principal whose high expectations and stringent attention to detail …

Jose VilsonThe Tourist (or Not That Black in America)
Cornel West, Professor

Live With Legends – Julian Bond and Cornel West

Jose 10 Comments

I had the pleasure of sitting in the front left aisle in the Barnes & Noble Bookstore in Union Square for a conversation between Julian Bond, chairman of the NAACP, and Dr. Cornel West, activist, thinker, professor, and leader. As I looked at this rather diverse crowd, young professionals, burgeoning and veteran journalists, liberals and scholars alike, I had no …

Jose VilsonLive With Legends – Julian Bond and Cornel West