Special Report: Big Ideas for Confronting Racism in Education

2020 has been a year like no other. The pandemic not only altered life as we know it, it also exposed the deep fault lines in our nation’s schools. The nation has also embarked on one of the largest movements in its history, as Black Lives Matter protests surged across the country over the brutal killing of George Floyd in May.

The reality is that a growing number of Americans are refusing to accept the existing inequities in this country, including in our education system. To wit: In a nationally representative survey, conducted by the EdWeek Research Center in June, 87 percent of teachers, principals, and district leaders agreed that Black students face higher rates of school discipline than their white peers due to discrimination.

But when EdWeek Research Center in August asked teachers if they had the training and resources they needed to teach an anti-racist curriculum, just 11 percent said they did. So, even as educators see the need to equalize and improve the educational experience for Black students, they might not have the tools or the support they need to address curriculum, practices, and policies that have long denied Black students the same opportunities to thrive as their white peers.

We appreciate and understand the dissonance. Which is why we chose to dedicate the entire Big Ideas special report to addressing anti-Black systemic racism in schools.

We’d like to hear how you’re working to create a better educational experience for our nation’s Black students by using #K12BigIdeas on Twitter or by emailing [email protected].


Big Ideas for Confronting Racism in Education

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DATA

A new nationally representative survey of teachers, principals, and district leaders offers key takeaways.


View the data: What Educators Really Think About Anti-Racist Teaching

JOIN THE CONVERSATION

What big ideas are you trying in your classroom, school, or district? We want to know.

Tweet your comments to us at #K12BigIdeas.

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Want to purchase print or digital copies of this report to share with your colleagues or students?
Contact [email protected].

Get an overview of this fall’s Big Ideas special report, which is dedicated to addressing anti-Black systemic racism in schools.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

School districts must make amends for their racist history, writes Daarel Burnette II. What should that look like?
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

Veteran reporter Debra Viadero invites researchers to scrutinize her decades of reporting for racial bias.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

In the world’s wealthiest country, why is broadband access denied to so many and in such high numbers? Mark Lieberman investigates.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

Young people deserve a say in how to keep their communities safe, writes high school student M’munga Songolo.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

A leadership program for young Black men looks to confront racism in law enforcement. Corey Mitchell explains.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

My knowledge of African American history did not come from school, writes Keziah Ridgeway. Why was that?
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

Teachers want to do better by their students of color, but many don’t know how. Madeline Will examines the gap between intention and action.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

Schools are not preparing students to enter an increasingly diverse world, writes high school senior Zoë Jenkins.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

When a student noticed that no one was teaching her classmates about racism, she took matters into her own hands, Catherine Gewertz reports.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

Understanding the Black experience also means seeing white privilege, writes education professor LaGarett King.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

Teachers need spaces to explore how power dynamics have shaped the subjects they teach, explains Sarah Schwartz.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

Anti-racist school leadership is about becoming more racially aware and taking action, explains Denisa R. Superville.
September 23, 2020 – Education Week

A new nationally representative survey of teachers, principals, and district leaders offers key takeaways.
September 25, 2020 – Education Week

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