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Politics and Education: Putting Kids First in Policy

As you read this, I want you to imagine or reflect back on being a student in public school. Reflect on school board and PTA meetings and how school board and community members were constantly and publicly asking questions about Black and brown students regarding academics and behavior.

Black and brown students still hear, see and experience the daily stares and questions about them. They experience the same trauma daily, seeing how they are discussed in the news, in community reports, or in school meetings. Furthermore, feeling the response from the administration and educators who are in place to police them more than protect them.

The tactics in public schools are still the same, it’s just the people that change. Questions about Black and brown children sound like...

  1. Why are Black and brown children behind reading grade level?

  2. Why is CRT an attempt to erase the educational advancement of Black and brown youth through literature and history?

  3. Why is their behavior so bad?

Our social climate is influenced by politics which impacts how we treat children in public schools. One of the most heated debates I have with my students is centered on rules and expectations which are often created in schools to help us determine how we want to be governed by the established system.

However, the policies found in public schools are often nonrestorative toward Black and brown students and teachers. In fact, many people refer to diversity, social justice, and equity as “buzz words''; things that are constantly talked about in conversations on public education but are rarely enacted for the true benefit of Black and brown students.

But the current push against Critical Race Theory is actually reducing the ability of teachers to include students of color, those who are marginalized or labeled.

We need educators in classrooms and boardrooms who are willing to put children first in the policy. I’m not saying this to sound good, because it’s a fact. Putting children first in policy will allow us to truly have anti-racist educational systems that don’t have policies that police and target children, especially Black and brown kids.

Subscribe to The Educators Voice here (insert website link) and check out more of this conversation on Wednesday, May 3rd at 6:00 p.m. for another episode of Speak Black Man podcast where another gent from Profound Gentlemen joins this month’s convo on social justice and policies influence on public school policy...

View Speak Black Man live on educational entities' FB page or our YouTube Channel.


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