Mar 17, 2021
How can educators help destroy entrenched inequalities and enact the values of Black Lives Matter in their classrooms, schools, and communities?
Jesse Hagopian and Denisha Jones, both educators and members of the Black Lives Matter at School movement, joined us to discuss this question. They believe that the United States is in the midst of an urgent moral and legal crisis over the safety, liberty, and well-being of Black young people. In an edited collection, Black Lives Matter at School: An Uprising for Educational Justice, they have gathered essential essays, interviews, poems, resolutions, and more from educators, students, and activists who have been building the Black Lives Matter Movement across the country. Hagopian and Jones layed bare the institutional racism inherent in our educational system, and present a critical call to radically reshape learning environments to make them safe, supportive, and transformative for all students.
Jesse Hagopian is a member of the Black Lives Matter at School steering committee and teaches Ethnic Studies at Seattle’s Garfield High School. Hagopian is an editor for Rethinking Schools magazine, the co-editor of the book Teaching for Black Lives, and the editor of the book More Than a Score: The New Uprising Against High Stakes Testing. Hagopian serves as the Director of the Black Education Matters Student Activist Award.
Denisha Jones is a member of the national Black Lives Matter at School steering committee and Director of the Art of Teaching, graduate teacher education program, at Sarah Lawrence College. Denisha is an education justice advocate and activist. She serves as Co-Director for Defending the Early Years, Inc, and is the Assistant Executive Director for the Badass Teachers Association. Currently, her research focuses on utilizing the BLM at School curriculum as cultural citizenship and documenting the value of play as a tool for liberation with an emphasis on global approaches to play.