Supporting Black Futures...
Tuesday turned out to be an historic Election Day here in Chicago. Twelve candidates competed in the Democratic race for mayor and the majority of votes went to Toni Preckwinkle and Lori Lightfoot, two Black women! Hurrah! They are set to compete in a runoff on April 2.
Both candidates have made Chicago schools a top priority.. Lightfoot has an aggressive 15-point plan for “transformation,” Preckwinkle proposes a 4-year freeze on charters and school closings. Both have big time plans for making schools more equitable for students of color. Sadly, this is a tall order and one that seems largely unattainable unless we make HUGE societal shifts away from racism and white privilege. We need radical changes, like the ones proposed by educator, professor, and reformer, Dr. Bettina Love. I got to see her speak at an arts conference a year ago and I’m eager to read her new book, out last week, We Want to Do More Than Survive.
Dr. Love calls for a shift in the way we define “education” and an examination of the ways we set our students, particularly our Black students, up to fail. Watch her talk about it in this Ted talk:
“And so I leave you with this: These kids are bright. They got it... but until we take the hand off of their backs that is called racism, bigotry, and hate, they will not be able to rise. “ (Dr. Bettina Love, TED talk)
Despite Tuesday’s “wins,” Black futures depend on so much more. On this last day of Black Future Month, when I know I haven’t done enough and because its never been more important, I thought I’d learn from YOU.
Mom, what are some ways that you support Black futures?
I will compile and post, so please share!
p.s. I’ll go first with a small effort: In the art classroom, I prioritize Black artists (usually women) when showing art examples.
p.p.s. I’ll volunteer my sister, Emily: she buys children’s books for her white nieces and nephews that feature Black children as main characters or that tell African American stories.