I can not tell you how grieved my heart has been at the types of legislation that’s been passed in my state over the course of the last few months in particular.
The work of anti-racism isn’t done in silence. It’s done in the intimacy of relationship, conversation, organizing and action.
As I’ve been growing in my own self awareness and activism, I long less for performative acts and more for true solidarity. The type of risk that leads to reward. The types of conversations that move people to shift paradigms.
So much of the social media world can be about pushing people into public gestures, but part of the reason here in Florida in particular things have taken such a downward spiral is because we’re not as much interested in the actual actions that would lead to changing perspectives.
So what does it look like to teach in a place where all of a sudden its considered taboo to teach history?
How do you emphasize the beauty in each student when you can’t connect to the beauty of their culture in the strength of the present?
How do you acknowledge the different identities in your classroom in a way that helps kids build community and feel seen?
The answer to that is going to be in each one of you reading.
The answer is NOT silence. The answer is NOT ambivalence.
The answer will most assuredly lie in your ability to connect to like minded people.
Take each professional opportunity you can to connect with other colleagues who are interested in seeing ALL kids thrive. Look for ways that you can join together and support one another. Look for PD to attend that will call on you to grow in your ability to serve students of various ability and cultural background. This summer I’ve been able to work with FEA on creating a new equity course. I’ve attended leadership training on PLC’s (Professional Learning Communities) and I am forever grateful for the new connections that I’ve made as a result.
It isn’t going to be easy this year, but it will be better in community.