• History of the Present Timeline: Racism in Education

    • 2022-Multiple states banning critical race theory

      Critical Race theory is the idea that United State social institutions such as the education system, healthcare, housing market include racist laws and regulations that disproportionately affect outcomes by race. Legislation is being passed across many states including Idaho, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas in efforts to ban critical race theory. The legislation that is being passed is trying to ban the discussion/ training/ orientation that the United States is inherently racist. They are also trying to ban any discussions about conscious and unconscious bias, privilege, discrimination, and oppression. This can go beyond race and potentially include gender and sexism as well. This restricts the education of injustices and history in the United States and does an injustice to students.

    • 2021- A school walk out against racism in their schools

      Black students are tired of racism in their schools and are fighting for change. Black students are being called the n-word and other racist slurs and they are fed up and making a change. Many students have been participating in walk outs and some going even further and speaking up in board meetings and even suing school districts. There are students at Tigard High School in Oregon that staged a walkout in protest of a video posted on social media that appears to show students using racial slurs. The racism and bullying has gotten so bad that some students are taking legal action to try and put a stop to the bigotry.


    • 2020- Covid disproportionality affects black students

      The worldwide Covid shutdown affected everyone. When schools were closed and classes were turned online all students were affected but black students were disproportionality affected by the school shutdown. The systemic racism in the education system leads to the effect. Schools in high minority areas were not given the resources to meet their student’s academic and social needs. When schools turned online these schools struggled to provide an education to their students. Many students lacked laptops, wifi, or the proper means to gain an online education. This set young black students even further behind when returning to school. Although all children suffered from the effects of covid, black students were not given the same resources due to a lack of funding from systemic racism. This only continued the cycle.


    • 2007-Race can not be a factor when assigning students to schools

      The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that the constitution forbids assigning students to schools based on their race. This is something that happened quite frequently in an effort to desegregate schools. My mother grew up in Cleveland and went through the desegregation busing system. She said that she lived right near her high school but her sophomore year they started busing her 40 minutes across the city to another school with no one that she knew. I remember her telling me that she felt ostracize in school and there were other struggles that went along with that. This system was not beneficial and forced desegregation is not beneficial. Diversity is important but forced diversity is not. This ruling effected to busing system that my mom was apart of.


    • 2001-No Child Left Behind Act

      The No Child Left Behind Act is a federal law that will provide money to schools for children who need more assistance including those from a lower socio economic level, disabilities, non English or limited English speakers, and minorities. This law applied to K-12 public schools in the United States. The No Child Left Behind Act held schools accountable for their students education and the way they learn. Schools achieved results through annual testing, reports, improvement targets, and penalties for the public schools. These changes made No Child Left Behind controversial, but overall they forced schools to actually focus on disadvantaged students and make the proper efforts for them to achieve.


    • 1996- California school district proposal sparks controversy

      An Oakwood, California school district proposes that Ebonics is recognized as African American students native language. Oakwood’s efforts were to maintain the legitimacy and richness of the language and would seek bilingual education funding. There was a lot of back lash from the public. The Oakwood school board tried change the negative image of black language by calling it “Ebonics” and then asked teachers to learn about the speech of their students. The public viewed this as an act of secession and denounced black English as unworthy to be used in the classroom. This is just another example of schools trying to bring down black students in ways they don’t even notice.


    • 1996-Federal court prohibits the use of race in college applications

      Affirmative action is the active effort to improve educational opportunities for members of groups that have been subjected to discrimination. Many colleges use affirmative action to give those of a minority more opportunities for college because they have been subjected to discrimination. Affirmative action creates an equal opportunity for minorities in regards to college or university. A Federal appeals court prohibited the use of race in college applications, which ended affirmative action in Louisiana, Texas and Mississippi. Minority students in Louisiana, Texas and Mississippi are now losing the equal opportunity that white students have. This is a set back for minority groups.


    • 1991- the Oklahoma City school system abandons its desegregation efforts

       The Supreme Court’s Oklahoma City-based Dowell decision, which is a landmark decision that sanctioned a return to segregated schooling by stating that districts may be released from a desegregation order if they have met certain conditions allowing them to. The Supreme Court base their decision on a courts findings that in Oklahoma City, re-segregated neighborhood elementary schools had increased achievement, parent and community involvement, while maintaining equity and integration in the city’s schools. This was not beneficial to black students as segregation was still exceedingly high. Although this ruling was not beneficial to black students, the desegregation was not beneficial either. Oklahoma City schools were not focusing on the black students and were only concerned about white students and their education.


    • 1989- Sheff v. O’Neill

      A lawsuit about how in Hartford, Connecticut public schools Black, Latinx, and white students who were being denied an education equal to the suburban school districts due to the racial segregation and the economic disparities between the Hartford schools and those in the suburbs nearby. The Connecticut Supreme Court found that Hartford schools were racially, ethnically, and economically isolated. These schools were in violation of Connecticut’s affirmative constitutional obligation that schools must provide all students with racially integrated and substantially equal educational opportunities. The Court ordered Connecticut to immediately resolve the racial isolation in the Hartford schools. This was a very important case for Connecticut students because it showed the racial, ethnical, and economical division between the schools and helped set reform.


    • 1978- Affirmative action program for the University of California Davis Medical School is unconstitutional (regents of the university of California v. Bakke)

      The Supreme Court declares that the affirmative action admissions program being used for the University of California Davis Medical School is unconstitutional because their program sets aside a specific number of spots for Black and Latino students. The Supreme Court ruled that race can be a factor in college and university admissions, but it cannot be the deciding factor. The Supreme Court is saying that race can be a factor in college and university admissions but it can not decide whether a student actually gets in. The University of California Davis Medical School can not hold a certain number of seats for Black or Latino students in their medical school.


    • 1974-Milliken v. Bradley

      Milliken v. Bradley is a law suit saying that the Detroit, Michigan public school system was racially segregated as a result of policies that were filed against Governor Milliken. The courts concluded that the system was in fact segregated. The Supreme Court held that “[w]ith no showing of significant violation by the 53 outlying school districts and no evidence of any interdistrict violation or effect,”. The district court’s remedy was not justified by Brown v. Board of Education. The Court noted that desegregation does not require racial balance in each school. The Court made an emphasis on the importance of local control over the schools.


    • 1964- Civil Rights Act of 1964

      The Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin. This act is considered to be one of the crowning legislative achievements. This was an overall act that applied to job hiring/firing/promoting, discrimination is school, discrimination is public areas, discrimination in court etc. This is such an important act because it led the civil rights movement and the future of equality for Black Americans. In the world of education, this did not stop segregation and did not mean equality for young black students but this act was a major stepping stone to black equality in education and is extremely important to acknowledge.


    • 1962- James Meredith is the first African American to attend University of Mississippi

      Mississippi took several measures to try and prevent his admission to the University of Mississippi. The University of Mississippi denied his admission and James Meredith filed a lawsuit against them. The Supreme Court ruled that James Meredith be admitted to the University of Mississippi. A riot then broke out on campus and an angry mob of white people then confronted the United States Marshalls there for Meredith’s protection. This did not stop James Meredith and he was the first African American to attend the University of Mississippi. This is so important to the civil rights movement because it showed the unequal opportunities black students struggled with. James Meredith had to go through court just to be admitted to a public university.


    • 1955- Brown II

      Following Brown v. Board of Education, Brown II is the later court ruling that stated that the dismantling of separate school systems for Black and white students could proceed with “all deliberate speed,” or desegregation should be implemented immediately. This opened the way for various strategies of resistance to the decision. Brown II ruled that Racial discrimination in public education is unconstitutional and federal, state, and local law must abide by this ruling. Brown II required desegregation in schools. This is instrumental in the civil rights and racial issues in the education system.


    • 1954- Brown v. Board of Education

      A unanimous Supreme Court decision overturns Plessy v. Ferguson. Brown v. Board of Education ruled that the racial segregation of children in public schools was unconstitutional. This overturned the “separate but equal” precedent set in Plessy v. Ferguson and ruled that separate but equal is not equal. Brown v. Board of Education proved that schools for Black students were not equal to the schools for White students. Brown also came up with the notion that segregated schools are inherently unequal. This is one of the most instrumental cases in terms of the civil rights movement and racism in education. This set the movement that was ending segregation starting with segregation in schools.


    • 1950- The Civil Rights Movement

      The Civil Rights Movement was movement for social justice and equality for African Americans in the United States. This was a large surge of activism that had many leaders and activists. They used non violent protest and civil disobedience to bring change. They held many marches across America which led to landmark civil rights legislation being passed such as Brown v. Board, The Civil Rights Acts, and The Voting Rights act. This was an instrumental movement that led to a change in the United States education system. This was a fight for equality in every aspect of living for African Americans.

    • 1948- Arkansas desegregates their state university

      In 1948, the University of Arkansas School of Medicine became the first southern medical school to desegregate. Shockingly, there was no struggle, riots, mobs, or court battles that had to happen for the acceptance of their first African American student, Edith Mae Irby. This was the start of desegregating southern medical schools and was also very important to the civil rights movement. Edith Mae Irby showed the academics and education required for medical school and was accepted without a problem, which sadly, was very rare at the time. Edith Mae Irby did not have to go through the court system to be admitted into the University of Arkansas School of Medicine.


    • 1940- Court requires equal salaries for African American and White teachers (Alston v. School Board of City of Norfolk)

      The federal court case of Alston v. School Board of City of Norfolk requires African American teachers and White teachers to be payed an equal salary. From the beginning, African American teachers have made significantly less money teaching than white teachers with similar training. African American teachers were making anywhere from 56 to 72 percent of what white teacher were making. Alston v. School Board of City of Norfolk set a new precedent for the civil rights movement and Plessy v. Ferguson. Alston v. School Board of City of Norfolk proved that Plessy v. Ferguson’s ruling of “separate but equal” was not equal. This eventually lead to Brown v. Board of education

      Alston v. The School Board of Norfolk is Decided

    • 1927-The Supreme Court allows states to define a Chinese student as non-white (Gong Lum v. Rice)

      The Supreme Court allows states the right to define a Chinese student as non-white for the purpose of segregating public schools. Gong Lum v. Rice case allowed states to define a Chinese student as non-white so they would not be able to attend white schools. Their segregation of public schools had one school for all white students and another school for all other races; carrying out the profound precedent that the white race is the superior race and they need their own separate school without any other races. This is obviously not true and is actually sickening that the Supreme Court went this far to segregate all other races.


    • 1896- Plessy v. Ferguson: Separate but Equal

      The Supreme Court allows segregation in Plessy v. Ferguson, and finds that Louisiana’s “separate but equal” law is constitutional. This ruling is built on the racist notions of white supremacy and black inferiority. This ruling also provides legal justification for the Jim Crow laws that were in the southern states. The Supreme Court promised equality to African Americans, although that was not actually given. The doctrine of “separate but equal” was found untrue because Whites and African Americans were separate, they were not equal in any way. This is a instrumental case that leads to the ruling of Brown v. Board of Education. This also means that schools are to be separated by whites and African Americans.


  • Field Blog Post 3

    My field observation was at Roxboro Elementary School in Cleveland Heights. I had the opportunity to observe a STEM teacher that seemed disinterested in her students. In my comic strip, I have a real conversation I had with a student my first time observing. The students were working on a STEM/ Spanish project and I noticed a student just sitting there. I decided to go over and sit with the student and ask him about his project. He then says that he needs help but the teacher has been ignoring him. I tried to offer as much assistance as I could but it was my first day observing and I wasn’t familiar with the project. As I was talking to the student he expressed that he felt ignored and uncared for. I immediately reassured the student of their worth. I told the student that they were important and that I would help them complete the project in any way I can. I then got up myself to call the teacher over and ask for specific directions. I stayed with the student and made sure he understood what to do. In class, we have frequently talked about being a caring teacher. Unfortunately, this was not what I observed. I have learned that it is vital to assure students of their capabilities in and out of the classroom. I was able to give the student some reassurance to help him finish this project.

  • Field Blog Post 2

    My field observation was at Roxboro elementary school in Cleveland Heights. During one of my observations, I was given the opportunity to have a conversation with the teacher I was observing and relate what she told me to the New Teacher Book we have been reading and studying in class. I was talking to my teacher about the setup of her classroom. The classroom was set up at tables of 4 and students got to choose where they sat. She made sure that everyone was sitting with someone and that no one was alone. She then talked about the importance of socialization in young adolescents. One of the things I noted is that she made sure to set a boundary with her students. She told her students that it is important to listen and be quiet while she gives directions. She lets the class know that after she is finished giving directions, the students may talk as they work, whether that is alone or with partners. I had the amazing opportunity to relate her classroom setup to the New Teacher Book section titled Uncovering the Lessons of Classroom Furniture by Tom McKenna. This section talks about the importance of your classroom setup because it can affect the class dynamic. I shared this with the teacher and she completely agreed. My comic strip reflects the conversation we had about classroom setup and the classroom setup of her class that I observed.

  • Field Blog Post 1(ED100)

    My Field observation was at Roxboro Elementary school. I observed a STEM teacher that was at Roxboro twice a week. I dressed the teacher in sweatpants and a sweatshirt with messy hair because that is what she looked like my first day. A teacher is a large role model for students and they should dress act accordingly. The teacher said that she had not planned a lesson and that the students should just play games on their laptops. I went over to talk to a child that was just sitting and he said his laptop is dead. The teacher blamed the young student for not being prepared even though she had not prepared a lesson. The student then had to sit there and was not able to play like the other students. I related this to one of the readings from the beginning of the year titled ” 12 suggestions for New Teachers”. One of the suggestions was that teachers should have an engaging lesson planned at the beginning of class. I saw quite the opposite. The students were not learning or engaged in any type of educational activity. All students deserve a high-quality education and the teacher I observed was not providing one. I had the opportunity to sit with the student whos laptop died and got to know him and I listened to his spring break plans. I viewed this lack of compassion from the teacher as an opportunity for me to listen to this student and engage in youthful conversation.

  • Current Connection 3( ED253)


    Brody, L. (2020, January 29). New York City Spends $200 Million a Year to Aid High-Poverty Schools, With Mixed Results: The initiative had no effect on students’ state test scores in reading and little effect in math, a study found, but absenteeism declined and graduation rates rose. Wall Street Journal – Online Edition, N.PAG.

    For our final current connection, the reading was titled “Urban School Reform, Family Support, and Student Achievement” by Kiersten Greene, and Jean Anyon. This reading was about how poor students need support in the school system and that the education system is not assisting the lower class students. Also, the reading talks about how when parents are living in poverty the child can develop behavioral problems, and an organization that was discussed is called New Hope. New Hope provided financial assistance and free child care for the parents. This lead to the students receiving better test scores in school and there was a positive effect on their behavior. Some of the main themes in the reading are the effects poverty has on children, support in schools, and the definition of school quality. 

    One of the important takeaways I took from the reading is how the article believes that school quality is defined. The article states that school quality is defined by higher student achievement in school, the number of school resources, how qualified the teachers are, the teacher’s attitudes during school, how nice the surrounding neighborhood is, the school’s condition, and whether the school is public or private. I would say that is how most people would define a quality school. A lot of the lower socioeconomic neighborhoods are lacking the qualities that would make it a high-quality school. This is the effect that high poverty neighborhoods have on students, a lack of resources for high-quality education. 

    The article uses many statistics to back up its reasoning. One of the main statistics that I found surprising was that 85% of the lower socioeconomic status students in 2005 were scoring below the basic levels of readings. This is a statistic that proves that students in poverty are not receiving the resources they need to gain a high-quality education. I think this is a very important issue in society because there is a cycle of lower-class families receiving a poorer education than the upper class. Until we are able to break the cycle of low-quality education in low socioeconomic areas then there will be no change and it will only set students further behind. This is a great societal issue that needs attention and change. 

    The article I chose to relate this to was titled New York City Spends $200 Million a Year to Aid High-Poverty Schools, With Mixed Results By Leslie Brody. This article is about New York City’s initiative to help public schools in high poverty areas. This article is so important because it brings up many important issues including the lack of resources these high-poverty schools have. New York City started Providing schools with social services such as Mental health counseling, dental clinics, afterschool programs, and food pantries. There are many negative effects high poverty schools with low funding can have on students learning. These Services were supposed to help ease concerns for students so that they can learn better and improve their academic performance. They did not want students to worry about being hungry or having health problems that can hinder learning. New York City officials were hoping that students could focus more on school and get better state test scores. What they did see was a decrease in absences and a higher graduation rate in school. Although there was little effect on state test scores, students were more engaged and had the resources to do better in school. 

    An important quote from New York City Schools Chancellor, Richard Carranza was “For students to learn, they need to have their basic needs met.” This is absolutely vital. This is giving students in high poverty areas more opportunities to do better and takes away from the stress of hunger, mental health issues, dental issues, and overall lack of reasources. It is important that every city provides these resources. The lower income students should not have to suffer a low-quality education when cities can help ease their concerns at school. I thought this article did an excellent job of showing the benefits that these resources have on students and it shows that students are more likely to show up if they have their basic needs met.

  • Current Connection 3 (ED100)

    The article:

    Carr, Dillon. “Gateway, Other Education Admins Call for Public Charter School Funding Reform.” Pittsburgh Tribune Review (PA), 28 Feb. 2020. EBSCOhost, https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=nfh&AN=2W62915948859&site=ehost-live.

    For my final current connection, the reading sections were: Moving Beyond the Classroom  By Stan Karp, Q/A: As a new  educator why should I be concerned about school privatization?, School Funding Basics  By Stan Karp, Why Teacher Unions Matter  By Bob Peterson, and New Teachers to the Union: Count Us In!  By Gabriel Tanglao. These readings covered a lot of topics from school funding to teachers unions. The section I chose to focus on for my current connection was School Funding Basics by Stan Karp. This section discussed public school funding and how public schools are losing funding to voucher schools or charter schools. I made sure to explain that a voucher school is a private school that enrolls students using publicly funded vouchers that pay the tuition and I explained that charter schools use public funds but are privately run. 

    I article I chose to relate the School Funding Basics section to was from a 2020 Pittsburgh tribute review by Dillon Carr. This article was about how The Gateway Board of School Directors (Pennsylvania) joined education administrators across the state calling for public charter school funding reform. TheGateway Board of School Directors and education administrators in pennsylvania Wanted legislators to reform the way charter schools are funded because it is unfair. The Charter school funding is based on an unfair formula that takes away from public school funding and does not accurately give charter schools funding. The Funding is based on how much the school spends each year and the more the school spends in the year the more funding they will receive. This Causing challenges and issues with the funding of school districts and is Impending the school districts ability to provide funding in other areas.

    There were two sides in this article. One side talked about how charter schools are unsatisfied with their funding and the method for it and the other side is public schools that are unsatisfied because they are losing funding which results in a loss of resources for their school. Charter schools argued that they need more funding for their new special education program that charter schools typically dont have. Public schools are continuing to make the argument that this would take even more funding away from their schools and programs. Propel is a charter school in pennsylvania and really important quote that was in this article is from Tina Chekan who is the Propel’s school superintendent and CEO. This quote says “Pennsylvania’s law should equally support public charter schools as well as traditional public schools. We all need to stay focused on what is best for kids and families,”. It is important to remember that charter schools and public schools need equal support and funding to operate and provide proper education for their students. 

    Dillon Carr writes this article from an informative standpoint. He is informing the audience of the current event going on in pennsylvania public and charter schools. This is a very important topic and article to read especially if youre from pennsylvania because this can greatly affect the schools and taxes and where funding is coming and going to. I had a lot of questions and some concerns about what I read in this article. I was able to discuss this questions with the small groups during our current connections and we had some collective thoughts that I invite you to ponder as well. We agreed that public schools are losing so much funding to voucher and charter schools and we agreed that it is important that all schools receive enough funding to properly educate their students but is that possible? Is it possible to fund all of these separate schools with enough funding that they have proper resources? 

    One thing that stuck out to me and one of the groups I spoke with was that the Charter schools had mentioned that they needed additional funding for their new special education program they introduced. We all agreed that instituting a special education program is extremely beneficial to those who need it but where would this funding come from. Would this take away from the special education programs that are already in public schools? This was a hard question to ask because its hard to argue against giving a school more funding for the special education program but it may disrupt the funding that the already existing public school special education program. There is a lot to ponder from this reading and there is no definitive answer at the moment.

  • Learning Experience 3 (ED 253)



    Our final learning experience reading was about globalization and the deculturalization of Native Americans through schooling and the Indian Removal Act of 1830. The deculturalization of Native Americans is something that I have never learned about in school. In fact, this article is probably the first time I have heard of the Indian Removal Act of 1830. What I learned is that in 1830, Native Americans were stripped away from their families and sent to school. These schools were made to “culturally transform” these children. In other words, destroy their culture and language. I also learned that the naturalization act of 1790 excluded Native Americans from gaining U.S. citizenship even if they were born in America. This was simply because they were not white. It took 134 years, in 1924 for Native Americans to actually receive citizenship when they were here first.

    The author of this article is simply informing the reading about the oppression Native Americans have faced. The author is talking about injustice so there is no true perspective other than truth. What happened is not a political debate or an opinion, it is just the horrific truth. The main themes the author talks about are the globalization of Native Americans, the deculturalization of Native Americans, the civilization of Native Americans, and the injustice upon Native Americans. 

    This reading left me asking more questions. It sparked my interest in digging deeper into the deculturalization of Native Americans and what is being done to even try and make up for the wrong doings. What I found is that there is not enough being done to help bring back and protect their culture. Schools not educating students on what happened is doing the opposite of helping rebuild the Native American culture that America attempted to destroy. Reading an article that is telling the simple truths about the oppression of Native Americans has educated me to a greater extent but as someone who had not known a lot about the deculturalization, it is now my responsibility to continue to educate myself so I can help educate others. 

    It saddened me to read this article because of the privileges I have had because I am white. I see myself continuing to ask the same questions about many of the topics that we learn about in ED253. The questions are always similar, “why were Native Americans targeted?”, “what gave Americans this feeling of superiority?”, “is something of this realm still happening today to any other cultures and we are just too blind to see right now?”, “what can I do as a future educator to help my students understand the bigotry in this country?’, and “why wasn’t I taught this”. I feel that there is no definitive answer to these questions but they give me a basis to continue my education on this topic. 

    In our lesson, we chose to emphasize globalization and its effects, the deculturalization of Native Americans, who Thomas McKenny was and what his role was during the deculturalization of Native Americans, the Reservation and Boarding Schools Among Native Americans, civilization, and the Meriam report. There was a lot to cover in this learning experience but we wanted to make sure that we were speaking the full truth so that the class can develop a better understanding of our topic. Our lesson objectives were, we wanted our students to develop a better understanding for globalization and the deculturalization of Native Americans, to understand what the Native Americans were forced to do in the reservation and boarding schools, and lastly, we wanted our students to continue to educate themselves and others. 

    I was able to contribute my knowledge that I learned from the reading and my additional research from outside sources about the deculturalization of Native Americans through schooling and legal acts set in place to discriminate against them. I had the opportunity to invite the students to learn more about deculturalization and the Indian Removal act of 1830. I also had the opportunity to ask the class to describe some of the deculturalization and globalization. Mine, as well as the rest of my learning circle’s responsibility was to educate the class on the injustices that Native Americans endured and allow the students to develop a better understanding of what happened and the lasting effects it has on Native Americans.

  • Learning Experience 3 (ED 100)

    For my final Learning Experience, I had the opportunity to read and develop an understanding of the conflicts, purposes, and alternatives to standardized testing. There were five sections in our assigned reading. To start our learning experience, we provided the class with the learning objectives for this experience. The learning objectives are that the class would have a better understanding of the effects of standardized testing, why standardized testing is harmful, the purpose of standardized testing, and alternatives to standardized testing. Following the learning objectives, we passed out a notecard that had a number on it to each of the students and had them ponder on what the notecard could mean. 

    We then moved on to the sections of the reading. The first section was titled Time to Get Off the Testing Train BY Stan Karp. This section went over the purpose of testing and what it can determine in a school. The examples that we provided were whether students get promoted or graduate, whether teachers keep their jobs, and funding for schools/school closures. We invited the class to understand the needs of students learning such as the importance of race and gender issues, art, music, and proper exploration of material. 

    The following section was titled 14 Days SBAC Took Away by Moé Yonamine. This section was from a teacher’s perspective and her reflection on the effects that standardized testing had on her students. This teacher was very against standardized testing because she saw the way it brought down her students, made them feel stupid, stressed them out, and took away from their learning. In fact, this teacher actually opted her own daughter out because she did not want her to go through inaccurate tests. 

    The section I was given the opportunity to discuss was titled Authentic Assessment for Learning. I learned so much about the alternatives to standardized testing and how we, as teachers, can accurately assess students learning and progress. Some of the models of authentic learning that were in this section include Portfolio-based assessment and learning records, Performance assessment, Exhibitions, Student-led parent-teacher conferences, and Schoolwide assessments. These models have so many benefits for students. This reading also covers the importance of the alternatives assessments being free of racial, cultural, class, or language bias, ensuring that the assessments do not take away from learning, schools use a variety of measures to determine students learning, and that it involves parents, students, and the community. 

    The fourth section is titled What’s Wrong with Standardized Tests? This section is vital in understanding the problems with standardized testing. The results are inaccurate and do not reflect the student’s knowledge and understanding of the material. Standardized tests take away from actually learning and narrow the curriculum. Standardized tests fail to be objective. The final section of our reading was titled Testing Assumptions and we discussed students’ protests against standardized testing. 

    After we finished our discussion about the reading we went back to the notecards that we passed out. We had each student write three facts about themselves on the numbered notecards. We then collected the notecards and read them out loud. We started off by saying “number 4” or whatever number they had and then read the facts they wrote down. We invited each student to ponder on what they think this activity is for. We then reveal the true purpose of this activity and its connection to the issues with standardized testing. The purpose was that standardized testing puts each student as a number and a score and strips students of their hard work and who they truly are. We had them write down some facts about themselves to show that students are more than just a number or a score; that students have importance in school. 

    We ended our learning experience by inviting each student to write down what they took away from this lesson. Certain students chose to share their thoughts on standardized tests. As a freshman who has just finished high school, I have many thoughts on standardized testing. I think that standardized testing is completely inaccurate and does more harm than good. From a student’s perspective, standardized testing caused stress, took away from learning, limited the curriculum, and led to inaccurate results about my knowledge. I felt that the reading was extremely informative and allowed me to reflect on the different ways we can implement alternatives to standardized testing that accurately reflect our knowledge and ability to understand complex concepts and material.

  • Service Learning Reflection

    For my service learning experience, I go to Bolton elementary school. Bolton elementary school is an underfunded, primarily black, Cleveland public school. I go around lunchtime every Friday and I am given the opportunity to sit with the kids while they eat their lunch, help them with their lunch, listen to them, talk to them, take them outside if it is warm enough, if it is not warm enough we stay instead and do a planned activity with the kids. Walking into this school I was shocked immediately. It had such a gloomy atmosphere. The staff, the building, the decorations, the resources. All so gloomy. I went to the bathroom and there were no soap dispensers, one sink ripped off, and graphite all over the walls and doors. I stepped into the lunchroom that was also their gym and it was ill-lit and dirty. I felt horrible and then the kids came in. These kids were the happiest and sweetest kids ever. I sat there and talked to them about their day and their plans for the weekend and all I kept thinking about was why them?

    Why do they have to go to school every day in these conditions? Why was my elementary school so much better. What is different about us? Our race? Why do our resources differ because they are black students and I was a white student? These questions were filling my head and it became extremely stressful. I felt helpless; I couldn’t do anything to give these kids a better school experience and then I remembered why I was there. I wasn’t there to change their life instead, I was there to place some happiness on their day. There is frustration when you can provide an easy solution to such a big problem not only for these kids but for society and other kids in underfunded schools. I was placed there for a reason. These kids crave someone that will genuinely care and listen to them and their problems. That’s why I was there. 

    The benefits went beyond the students. After my second visit, I really started to appreciate my purpose there. I was excited to go see them and they added happiness to my stressful weeks. This service learning experience has allowed me to critically think and ask questions as to why these students are here and why I am here. 

    The first girl that stuck out to me was a 2nd grader named Ayanna. Ayanna is a gorgeous girl that is actually a triplet. She ran up to me right away and immediately started asking questions. Some of the questions were innocent like “What’s your favorite color?” or my favorite “ Can I sit by you every week?”. Other questions went much deeper for me like “ Why does our hair feel different?” “Why can you come every day?” or “ Why are you here?”. It takes me a couple of seconds to respond because I want to make sure that I am giving the best possible response but when I get comments like “ I wish I had your hair. It is much prettier.” it crushes me on the inside. I try to shut down comments like that fast by saying “I love your hair, it is gorgeous and it makes you, you!” and they’re still kids so she moves on pretty quickly. 

    I have learned so much from the kids that sit at my table, mainly because children really don’t have filters. They will talk about their home life very casually. I have learned that many of them live with their grandparents and many have family members in jail. They will bring it up in conversation and others will agree or say “ Me too”. I was shocked by how casual this is for them but this is what they have grown up around their whole life. 

    Approaching Critical Service-Learning: A Model for Reflection on Positionality and Possibility by: Mark Latta, Tina M. Kruger, Lindsey Payne, Laura Weaver, and Jennifer L. VanSickle allowed me to think more critically following each of my service learning experiences. This article talks about the importance of cultural identity and ways to understand our differences during service learning experiences. I have had such a different experience in elementary school than these children have, which is why I was so taken back at first. It is frustrating that these predominantly black schools are so underfunded while the predominantly white school I went two only twenty minutes away was so nice and kept up. I have learned my purpose at Bolton Elementary school and I plan to give everything I can to these students for the 1 hour I am there every Friday.

  • Current Connection 2(ED 253)

    Article citation:

    Simonds, W. (2020, October 31). My experience with a problem-posing model of Education. Medium. Retrieved March 23, 2022, from https://medium.com/writing-150-fall-2020/my-experience-with-a-problem-posing-model-of-education-71cfa1b4c103 

    The reading we were given for our current connection was tilted The Banking Concept of Education by: Paulo Freire. This reading introduced the banking concept of education and the problem posing concept of education. These are the two most basic types of teaching and Freire gave us a great comparison for us to ponder. In Paulo Freire’s article, he described the banking concept of education as teachers feeding their students information as if they were empty vaults. In other words, a lecture style class that is not engaging or interactive with the students. As for the problem posing concept, Paulo Freire described this concept as teaching to allow students to have the freedom to critically think and fully engage with the curriculum being taught in the classroom. The problem posing concept of education seemed to be more academically beneficial in the classroom because the students are more humanized and engaged and it gives them more freedom to think critically.

    Some of the examples for the banking concept of education presented by Paulo Freire are- The teacher teaches, the student is taught. The teacher disciplines, the student is disciplined.- Those examples provide a better understanding of the banking concept of education and the strict structure it involves. The banking concept of education is more lecture style teaching and these examples show that this type of teaching is making students into an empty vault and just shoving information inside until it is full. There is minimal to no true engagement and minimal to no freedom for critical thinking. It is less about how the students are learning and more about how much the teacher is teaching.

    The problem posing concept is more focused on the students’ learning. This concept has a set focus on critical thinking and freedom in the classroom. Allow the students to learn what is interesting and important to them and teach in a way that is more engaging and academically beneficial for the students. 

    The assigned reading can be used and applied in the classroom and it is actually very important that we study the best ways students learn. This concept really focuses from the perspective of the student in the classroom. Although the effects are caused by the teachers teaching concepts, it is the students that need to be observed to truly understand which concept is more beneficial. Paulo Freire raised many good points in the reading about the comparison of the banking concept vs problem posing concept of education. The importance of real world knowledge is very prevalent. There is a strict curriculum in most schools and the main reason is for standardized testing but most schools’ curriculum lacks real world teaching. This is essential to create successful, individual students.  The article I chose to relate the reading to is titled My Experience With A Problem-Posing Model of Education by: Will Simonds. This article is about Will Simonds personal experience in school with the banking concept and problem posing concept of education. Will Simonds writes about how he had read and studied The Banking Concept of Education by: Paulo Freire. After reading this, Will Simonds began to really observe his teachers’ teaching methods and how he learned as a student. He focused on a specific teacher he had and loved in school but his teaching method was similar to the banking concept so he had a tough time retaining knowledge and enjoying learning in his class. He recalls how nice his teacher was as a person but his teaching style was dehumanizing and the opposite of his typical persona. Will Simonds later goes to take another one of his classes and notices that the specific teacher had changed his teaching style from the banking concept to the problem posing concept he had read about. He writes about how the class was more engaging, he got to learn information that actually interested him and his classmates, he was able to retain more information that his teacher taught, and most importantly, he felt humanized as a student. Will Simonds gave an amazing real life experience that shows the real life benefits to the problem posing concept of education and how the banking method was not academically and humanly beneficial. This article took Paulo Freire’s writing and was able to apply it to his own classroom and learning experience.