Your Story Requested

Power of Ten Update
In This Issue:
1. Your Story Requested
2. Culturally Relevant Teaching
3. Extended Reading: Righteous Incivility

1) Your Story Requested

Several readers have contacted the Power of Ten with concerns about long waits for registration and problems with busing.

You can submit your story to Power of Ten, and it will be used to create a report. No personal information will be shared without your permission.

Do you have a story?

Submit your story here:

YouTube video of transportation discussion at the last school board meeting:

2) Culturally Relevant Teaching

East Ramapo has a state mandated plan which states that instructional practices will be culturally responsive. This has never been evaluated by the state monitors. 

What does Culturally Responsive Education look like? 

Here is a brief summary, mostly drawn from this article by Christy M. Byrd of the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Culturally relevant teaching is a powerful method for increasing student achievement and engagement that draws on student’s home lives, communities, and cultural funds of knowledge. Unfortunately, culturally relevant teaching is often simplified and relegated to little more than occasional group work or celebrating different cultures in ways that disregard individual interests and stereotype students.

Culturally Relevant Teaching means:

    • Teachers have high expectations.
    • Teachers promote cultural competence
    • Teachers promote critical consciousness

Cultural Competence means:

    • Teachers develop cultural competence by understanding their students’ communities and home lives.
    • Teachers encourage students’ understanding of their own and others’ cultures by including content from students’ homes and communities and by representing people of many backgrounds in materials.
    • Teachers use students’ previous experiences and knowledge gained from their families and communities as assets in the classroom.
    • Teachers create bridges from students’ knowledge to the classroom content
    • Teachers also create bridges by bringing the outside world into the classroom and sending students into the community for service learning.

Critical Consciousness means:

    • Teachers raise students’ critical consciousness by addressing issues of social justice and racial inequality in the classroom.
    • Teachers encourage students to identify problems in their communities and to seek ways to address them.
    • Teachers acknowledge societal oppression and encourage students to notice how those dynamics are evident in their everyday lives.
    • Teachers also empower students in the classroom and give students opportunities to participate in decision making.

Does East Ramapo have a Culturally Relevant instructional practice? Is NYSED holding the district accountable to its stated plan?

3) Extended Reading: Righteous Incivility

This issue’s extended reading can be viewed as a first installment of the follow up to my essay on tolerance.

Here it is: