On this page we are collecting resources for those who would like to engage in their own professional learning. While the intended audience is current K-12 educators, this page applies to anyone involved in youth education. In the following videos, we hope to provide concrete models for how a teacher could organize their own learning. These examples show how teachers can get what they need for their own students beyond what their own school and districts might offer. In particular, we focus on political learning, which is often simply not available, or else actively discouraged, by schools and districts. While these examples are located in major cities, San Jose, Los Angeles, and New York, these specific examples do not require large amounts of resources, simply a few colleagues, a place to gather, and maybe some food.
For those who do not have local colleagues to learn with, teachers have turned to social media. We highlight in particular the work of EduColor as well as @ValeriaBrownEdu and her work with #cleartheair
Grassroots professional learning in action
In this video, Mike Tinoco, an educator in San Jose, California and a nonviolence trainer with East Point Peace Academy speaks about how he started a critical friends group in the Bay Area. If you’re in the area, you can join their group by visiting https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/sbcriticalfriends. Mike’s contact information is at the end of the video. Below is the first video, but the full playlist can be found here.
Natalia Ortiz and Pam Segura from the New York Collective of Radical Educators (NYCORE) spoke to use about their Inquiry to Action Groups. ItAGs combine learning and action where people come together to learn about a specific topic and then plan and enact some kind of collective action based on that topic. For more information visit http://www.nycore.org/ or @NYCoRE3000
Natalia was also featured in The Pedagogy of Teacher Activism by Keith Catone which tells the stories of four teacher activists.
Stephanie Cariaga is a current assistant professor at Cal State Dominguez Hills and one of the founders of the People’s Education Movement. Here she talks about their teacher inquiry groups and healing and wellness groups. Part of making the work of teachers sustainable is through taking care of their own social and emotional well-being. See more about People’s Ed by visiting their website https://peoplesed.weebly.com/ or follow them on Instagram www.instagram.com/peoples_ed and https://www.instagram.com/peoplesbayarea/
The following are some academic articles about People’s Ed and the work they are doing (paywall)
- Martinez, A. N., Valdez, C., & Cariaga, S. (2016). Solidarity with the People: Organizing to Disrupt Teacher Alienation. Equity & Excellence in Education, 49(3), 300–313. https://doi.org/10.1080/10665684.2016.1194104
- Navarro, O. (2018). We can’t do this alone: Validating and inspiring social justice teaching through a community of transformative praxis. Curriculum Inquiry, 48(3), 335–358. https://doi.org/10.1080/03626784.2018.1468212
- Pour-Khorshid, F. (2018). Cultivating sacred spaces: a racial affinity group approach to support critical educators of color. Teaching Education, 29(4), 318–329. https://doi.org/10.1080/10476210.2018.1512092
Additional Resources (last updated 6/20/19)
We will keep adding to this page examples of organizations, conferences and resources that support critical, grassroots professional learning.