Volume 34, No. 2

Winter 2019-20

The winter issue of Rethinking Schools has a special section on teaching the 1964 New York City school boycott, the largest civil rights protest you’ve never heard of. There’s also an editorial about how we need to sustain the new Black Lives Matter at Schools movement, an article from Eric Blanc about the future of the Red for Ed movement, and a report from a California teacher about what happened when a major tech company tried to partner with her school. And that’s just the beginning!

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  • The Largest Civil Rights Protest You’ve Never Heard Of

    Teaching the 1964 New York City school boycott

    By Adam Sanchez

    The largest civil rights protest wasn’t in the South, it was in New York City in 1964 when hundreds of thousands of students stayed home to protest school segregation. Here’s how today’s students reacted to a lesson about this historic boycott.

  • Black Lives Matter at School: From the Week of Action to Year-Round Anti-Racist Pedagogy and Protest

    By the editors of Rethinking Schools

    Every social justice educator should make building the BLM at School Week of Action during the first week of February a top priority.

  • Doing Race Talk with Teachers

    How to stay in the conversation

    By Dyan Watson

    A teacher-educator describes how she keeps her students talking about race, even when it’s uncomfortable — and shows how those conversations make better teachers.

  • Widening the Digital Learning Gap

    A San Francisco middle school grapples with a tech company "partnership"

    By Rachel Clouse

    Referring to this phenomenon now as a “learning gap” also suggests that it is a problem associated with schools, rather than a broader economic inequality.

  • How One 2nd-Grader’s Story Inspired Climate Justice Curriculum

    By Rachel Hanes

    A 2nd-grade teacher shows how connecting a student’s home to the classroom led to profound lessons for all her students — in this case, about pipelines and climate justice.

  • Science Language for All

    By Amy Lindahl

    Oogenesis? Heterozygous? Science vocabulary can be difficult for students, especially English language learners. A science teacher describes how she reorients science classrooms to make vocabulary accessible.

  • As an Arab American Muslim Mother, Here Is the Education I Want for My Children

    By Nina Shoman-Dajani

    A Palestinian American mother describes the alienation that she felt in school, and how she draws on her experiences to imagine the schooling she wants for her children.

  • Teacher Unions Take on the Climate Crisis

    Column: Earth, Justice, and Our Classrooms

    By Rachel M. Cohen

    As young people across the country join the global movement to mobilize school strikes to demand climate action, one group is starting to think more seriously about how to best support those efforts: their teachers.

  • Red for Ed: The Movement Strengthens and Continues

    By Eric Blanc

    In 2018, numerous commentators portrayed the West Virginia, Oklahoma, Arizona, and Kentucky school walkouts as a purely “red state” phenomenon. But events this year have made clear that the strike wave is national in scope and shows no signs of ebbing anytime soon. For supporters of public education, the big story of 2019 is that […]

  • “We Did What Had to Be Done”

    A Milwaukee student responds to critics of a mural about ICE that she and a group of teenagers legally painted on a county bus

    By Yazmillie Reyes

    I worked with ArtXpress — a program for teens through the Milwaukee Art Museum — as an intern for three weeks over the summer. Our mission was to choose a social justice issue in Milwaukee that we wanted to bring awareness to. We were given the freedom to express our opinions and beliefs by creating […]

  • Our picks for books, videos, websites, and other social justice resources 34.2

    Curriculum An Indigenous People’s History of the United States for Young People By Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, adapted by Jean Mendoza and Debbie Reese(Beacon Press, 2019)272 pp. In this adaptation of Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz’s influential book, curriculum developer Jean Mendoza and children’s literary critic Debbie Reese provide young people with a history of the Native people whose lands […]