Before We Can Have Anti-Racist Classrooms, Teacher Preparation Needs an Overhaul
October 5, 2020
Read the introduction to this essay, "Teachers Can Take on Anti-Racist Teaching. But Not Alone," by Education Week staff writer Madeline Will.
In college, I was a history major, yet I learned more about the Black experience from reading books than I ever did in school. Sadly, this is also the case for many students, and poor teacher-preparation programs steeped in anti-Blackness should shoulder a large part of the blame.
I teach African American history using a curriculum that has abolished the white supremacist, racist, and patriarchal lenses that are intrinsic within schools and are so harmful to all students. This is so different from my experience as a Black Muslim student growing up in Philadelphia: I never saw myself represented in the history curriculum unless I was learning about a sanitized version of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a tired Rosa Parks, or a "militant" Malcolm X.