Educators have a tremendous responsibility to make sure their students are ready to learn. If there are barriers to learning, it is the challenge of educators to identify those barriers then break them down so that their students may learn. Racism is a barrier not readily identified or acknowledged. Once acknowledged, many educators do not know what to do about it. This section will help educators to:
- Identify and examine personal biases (all of us have them) and consciously address them when working with students of color;
- Be willing to have tough conversations with colleagues, students, parents, and community members;
- Look at the school with new eyes and examine curricula, wall decorations, school calendars, texts and literature, etc., to identify systemic racism, however subtle, that has existed in the day to day operation of the school;
- Make changes to lesson plans and seek out new ones, so that all students feel respected, included, safe, and challenged when learning;
- Work to identify and challenge explicit and implicit racism in school, setting a positive example and in turn, improve school climate
* Landsman, J. (2012, January 30). Julie Landsman on race, white privilege and the achievement gap. Twin Cities Daily Planet.