Help, my school’s courses are culturally irrelevant!

Students deserve to take courses that are interesting, relevant, and engaging. Sure, we can make all content more relevant and responsive, but you can also simply offer alternative classes. Better yet, you can make the alternative, mandatory. Ask yourself, what can happen when you make the interests of marginalized students central and essential?

What if?

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Interrupting patterns of participation in staff meetings

You want to disruptpatriarchy and white supremacy in the curriculum and in our learning outcomes. But, these patterns of oppression start in our adult interactions, and boy does it show up in meetings. Although difficult, it is possible to take action with some critical reading, radical norms, and the use of process checks.

In order to change outcomes, your staff needs to talk about teaching and learning in different ways. This requires new mindsets, tools, and ways of being.

Many times, white male staff feel very comfortable speaking up, speaking first, and filling the time. Sometimes, this gets disguised as “the voice of experience” because many staff of color tends to be younger, newer to teaching, and more transient in large urban school districts. But, the result is that people of color and women are often quieted and marginalized.


It’s time to turn up the volume. But how?

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5 interview questions to find equity warriors

It’s hiring season in schools and getting the right people on the bus is a leader’s most important task.

All aboard.

But first, you have to ask the right questions.

Nowadays, with lower salaries, a lack of national respect for education, and the increasing difficulty of the job, it is HARD to find good folks. Therefore, we have to make the best decision. And, the fate of humanityrests on you being able to find the best people.

So, how in the name of Paulo Freire, do you find them?

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Can white leaders be culturally responsive?

Our identity has an incredible effect on our ability to make a change in schools. Whether you are a person of color or a white person, understanding of your culture, ethnicity, and race matters.  A lack of understanding creates intentional and unintentional harm. It can be a limiting factor and contribute to institutional oppression. In the meantime, students are failing and being pushed out of schools.  But, identity can also be a source of power.

It can be a tool, used to engineer for equity. How can you start building?

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Share your equity purpose with these 5 prompts

An equity-focused purpose can be a source of power to create urgency, build momentum, and transform your school. It can also build community. Leaders who know their purpose and know when to share it can inspire change, through tapping into our emotional core.

We show up to work every day and fulfill the duties of our job. The work, if you are in urban or inner city schools, is especially challenging. We work long hours, deal with setbacks, and keep pushing. But why?

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6 Habits of Highly Innovative Schools

We usually think of change as big, overwhelming, and insurmountable. This might be the addition of graduation portfolios, raising reading scores, or addressing Social Emotional Learning standards. This feels more than you have time, energy, or resources for. So why try? Because change can start small.

Very small.

You just have to break it down.

Into habits.

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How to hack your bell schedule, how to blow it up

The world has evolved since the 1950s and so should our bell schedules.

We are no longer preparing students to be factory workers and simply pass the US Citizenship test. It’s inequitable and often times racist to only “offer” interesting and rigorous courses to some students. It’s time to say goodbye to the boring, robotic 6-period daily schedule.

Buh bye bland bell schedules.

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Are you wasting money? 5 ways to maximize your school budget

It’s officially budget season and that comes with tons of excitement, planning, and some worries. Master schedule, hiring, prep periods, non-personnel supplies oh my.

You have to make those dollars stretch like Mr. Fantastic.

But, slow down speed racer.

If equity is your mission and social justice your vision, consider this:

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