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Showing posts from August, 2014

Five Social Justice Challenges to Teachers

As the new school year is about to get underway, I just wanted to take a moment to urge teachers to think about how social justice issues impact their classrooms. I've listed 5 social justice challenges to teachers below to encourage us to think about how we interact, teach and organize our classrooms to promote equity and justice.

Too often, and especially at the beginning of a school year, I see teachers becoming concerned about having the "right" posters on the wall or trying to become an expert at the latest "technological innovation" in teaching. As great as technology can be in a classroom, teaching and learning is about human interaction. At the heart of that interaction can be a shared commitment to learning through a social justice framework.

Here are my five social justice challenges to teachers:

1. Create a safe and equitable classroom for LGBTQ students. If we want to create an inclusive classroom where students care for each other, we must instill …

Ferguson and Edmonton Inner City Youth

I've spent the last few nights watching the live streams from Ferguson, Missouri and witnessing the injustice that is taking place there. I've read countless articles and watched countless commentators explain and analyze this issue. I'm not going to go into the details of what is occurring in Ferguson, as there are much more competent folks that can give you a more detailed analysis than I can.

However, as I watch the events unfold in Ferguson, I can't help but think of my own students and how Mike Brown could have easily been one of my own. I work in Edmonton's inner city with marginalized youth. 95% of the student population identifies as First Nations, Metis or Inuit. Within the white dominant society that we live in, my students often feel that they are pushed to the edges and do not have the same opportunities as other youth. This feeling of "marginalization" that they have can be described in their interactions with Edmonton's police. Students …