Learn them; they are why you teach

After the cooing phase, babies begin to babble, the first beautiful expression of the languages they hear around them. This is so remarkably a sign that babies are ready to communicate through language that even if babies are surrounded by a signed language instead of a spoken one, they babble with their hands. Equally amazing […]

Retention, Responsiveness, and Parent-Teacher Communication

Retention conversations express dysfunctional parent-teacher communication strategies and place certain students at greater risk of negative outcomes. Many parents will receive unhappy news about their children’s academic, emotional, and social development from teachers and other school professionals at some point in their children’s school lives.  As a former teacher of self-contained special education classes in […]

Success Academy Charter Network Suspension Factory

Success Academy is a reflection of how the educational system in America negatively impacts certain student groups. In response to the Success Academy charter network suspension debacle, I am choosing to speak to all educators in America since the Success Academy experience mirrors the educational public school system in the United States. To all educators, […]

Leadership Instability and Divisions within a School District Cited for Disproportionality

Although it was only an hour train ride from New York City to Parktown*, New York, this suburban city seemed like a different world. From the train station to the elementary school where the professional development was held, there was little if any presence of cars and people compared to the busy streets of New […]

Culturally Responsive Field Research in Program Evaluations and Monitoring

When social science researchers engage in fieldwork projects, there is usually a set of prescribed of protocols that guide the parameters of their research. Some of these protocols and principles are grounded in legal issues, such as Institutional Review Board (IRB) guidelines, while others are guided more by informal or formally-codified “best practices” intended to […]

“Are my students at risk?” Measuring Disciplinary Disproportionality

It is a well-established fact that Black students in the United States are more likely than other students to receive disciplinary referrals, and be suspended or expelled from school.   For example, the U.S. Department of Education’s Civil Rights Data Collection notes that in 2013, Black students comprised 26 percent of all students in New York […]

Trans Women are Their Stories To Tell: My Facebook Post about Chimamanda Adichie

In response to Chimamanda Adichie’s remarks about trans women being a type of woman, I made a decision and posted a sensationalist newspaper article (that was limited in scope) and made a uni-dimensional comment that was far too casual and brimming with ignorance about trans women and their lived experience. For a population that experiences […]

Fragile and afraid

It is quite common during our work exploring issues of race, power, and privilege with schools around the country for white participants to suggest we should shy away from inflammatory terms like “white privilege.” They assert, by avoiding being provocative, we could rally more folks around efforts to address inequity. Exerting the very privilege they […]

Parent Workshops for the College and Career Process

At the College Prep Academy, we know how important and valuable our parents are in the process of career and college planning.  This past year- through a grant from the Voya Pinkerton and Meringoff Foundations- we have been able to expand our outreach and services to our parents. As a result, our high school seniors […]

Engaging the Power of Interests

NYC Subways Bearded dragons King Tut Shrubbery 18th century architecture Power lines Ukuleles Zip codes Just a few of the topics I now know a great deal about thanks to individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD).  This tendency towards unique, focused areas of interest is one of the hallmarks of individuals on the autism spectrum; […]