Articles

The 2018 Wave of Teacher Strikes

A Turning Point for Our Schools?

The wave of struggles sweeping through the United States are more than “red state” revolts. They are rebellions against the austerity and privatization that has been driving federal and state economic policy for decades. The dynamics and political landscape are different in each state. However, almost all of the states where statewide actions have occurred are right-to-work states, which have seen the steepest cuts in school funding and sharpest erosion of teacher pay and benefits. These states are less likely to have collective bargaining rights and local district contracts. This puts more focus on state budgets and state decisions about healthcare and pensions, and encourages statewide action focused on the legislature. Consequently, many of the walkouts have been more akin to mass political protests seeking broad changes in public policy. But other common factors underlying these grassroots protests are likely to keep rebellion spreading to “purple” states like Colorado (where there was a walkout in April) and North Carolina (May) and beyond. Almost everywhere in “red states” and “blue states” alike, budget and tax policy has been used to erode social services, shrink public space, undermine union power, and transfer wealth upward, all the while making the lives of working people harder.

The 2018 Wave of Teacher Strikes

Beyond the Medal: Representations of Disability in Caldecott Winners

We often think of Caldecott books as the gold standard for picture books. Here the authors of "10 Quick Ways to Analyze Children's Books for Ableism" look at what these prize-winning books tell young children about disability.

Beyond the Medal: Representations of Disability in Caldecott Winners

The Human Lives Behind the Labels

The lead article in a Rethinking Schools special report about the international exploitation of low-wage workers, many of them children, and how teachers are bringing this issue to life in their classrooms.

The Human Lives Behind the Labels

Defeating Despair

An excerpt from the forthcoming book, Rethinking Globalization: Teaching for Justice in an Unjust World.

Defeating Despair

Standards and Multiculturalism

Multiculturalism is a search. It's a conversation to discover silenced perspectives. Yet standardization emphasizes one "fixed" answer.

Standards          and Multiculturalism

The Big One

Teaching about climate change

The environmental crisis requires a profound social and curricular rethinking.

The Big One

What Students Are Capable Of

Sexual Harassment and the Collateral Beauty of Resistance

“We have something to tell you but we’re worried about getting you too involved. We don’t want to get you in trouble,” Baylee and Zaida whispered excitedly as they wiggled through the crack in my classroom door on my prep. I was confused to see them in such high spirits because earlier in the day they had been crushed by news from our administration. For more than two months they had been part of our Restorative Justice club that had been planning two half-day workshops around women empowerment for female-identifying students and toxic masculinity for male-identifying students. The club of 11 demographically diverse students had been urging adults in our building to do something about sexual harassment since October, when they made sexual assault and harassment their Restorative Justice club theme of the month and visited 9th grade classes to lead circles on the topic. This opened up a door for 9th graders to continue to reach out to upperclassmen about the harassment they were facing.

What Students Are Capable Of

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

Curriculum Exploring World History and Current Events with David Rovics A Musical Teaching Aiddavidrovics.com/history/ The radical troubadour David Rovics has organized many of his songs into themed teaching modules, adding commentary and context. Fifteen modules include 10 to 15 entries on different events, each including a song, along with written reflections. David Rovics sings people’s history to life. His songs can be funny, poignant, or outrageous, but they never fail to...

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

Climate Change, Gender, and Nuclear Bombs

Column: Earth, Justice, and Our Classrooms

In the spring 2011 issue of Rethinking Schools we editorialized about the immense gulf between our terrible environmental crisis — especially the climate crisis — and the adequacy of schools’ curricular response. Seven years later, we still see this gap between crisis and curriculum — which is why we are launching this regular “Earth, Justice, and Our Classrooms” column: to offer encouragement and resources for teachers to help students explore the roots and consequences of the crisis and figure out how to respond.

Climate Change, Gender, and Nuclear Bombs

The Teacher Uprising of 2018

They’re calling it the “Education Spring,” and what started in a rural county in southwest West Virginia has spread like wildfire and inspired teachers and other public sector workers across the country. “Healthcare was bad, the pay was bad, the working conditions were bad . . . you’ve got too many kids in the classroom. It’s the same issues that we see across the country and across the world and we...

The Teacher Uprising of 2018

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