“Daddy What are You?”: thoughts on white skin and Whiteness

I know the day is coming. It won’t be tomorrow, but it is coming. Some day, relatively soon, my daughter is going to ask me what I am. She is going to notice that I am a lighter shade of brown than her mommy. She is going to ask me if I am White. She… Continue reading “Daddy What are You?”: thoughts on white skin and Whiteness

This is Why we Hate You: MisAdventures in Gentrification

To Leslie Bock and the folks over at Betty Danger’s My name is Ryan Williams-Virden. I spent the first thirty years of my life in Northeast Minneapolis. The Northeast that I remember, however, is very different from the one that you have crafted from what, I’m sure, you saw as rubble. Let me explain. I… Continue reading This is Why we Hate You: MisAdventures in Gentrification

“If Adults Would Have Reacted Differently”: what we should be talking about when it comes to SPPS

“Kill the Indian Save the Man” Capt. Richard H. Pratt Saint Paul Public Schools has been in the media often over the past several months mainly due to their contract with Pacific Education Group (PEG) and the discipline policy aimed at curbing suspensions for students of color. ¬†Yesterday they were¬†in the news once again, and… Continue reading “If Adults Would Have Reacted Differently”: what we should be talking about when it comes to SPPS

May the Force Awaken Us

I hadn’t been on social media for most of the day, so I logged on to see what my people were talking about. It didn’t take long for me to come across the #BoycottStarWarsVII hashtag. Being the Star Wars nerd that I am, I was intrigued. What I found simultaneously made me sad for humanity… Continue reading May the Force Awaken Us

Uncommon Schools With All Too Common Solutions: how the emphasis on effective teaching undermines justice

I was walking down the hallway during study hall. I shouldn’t have been in the hallways but it was 8th period and I was a senior. In other words, I didn’t give a shit. When I turned the corner I ran into my Street Law teacher. I don’t remember every detail of the conversation, but… Continue reading Uncommon Schools With All Too Common Solutions: how the emphasis on effective teaching undermines justice

Reading the World: Schools vs. Society

For the better part of the last decade I’ve been a high school social studies teacher. I’ve spent a considerable amount of energy during that time explaining to students that taking education seriously and going to college was the path out of pretty dire circumstances. Even though I do my best to tell them the… Continue reading Reading the World: Schools vs. Society