These are small, easy ways we can support the good work being done in our community and help push for equitable access to resources, publicity, power, and monetary support.
Last week, Amelia and Derek were lucky enough to be included as presenters at NCTE, the National Council of Teachers of English conference in Baltimore. As usual, the conference proved to be a rewarding and eye-opening experience for us.
Amelia attended several sessions led by educators/authors/activists of color. A repeated call, across sessions and focus, was to white educators to reflect upon their own participation in white supremacy and ACT in ways that disrupt existing power structures and space. Conversations about power and space continued long past sessions as educators on Twitter noted the small physical spaces assigned to sessions led by BIPOC (Black, Indigineous & People of Color) educators, the mass exodus of (white) educators during Tommy Orange’s keynote in order to get books signed, the high cost of NCTE conference attendance, the poor behavior of educators clamoring for free resources, and the overwhelming whiteness of conference attendees themselves.
The issues noted at NCTE are, of course, not specific to English education conferences and are, rather, emblematic of larger issues of power, space, and access to essential resources in American society. As white educators working within public education and in nonprofit management, we continue to learn and reflect upon the ways we benefit from white supremacy culture. This month (December 2019), we will share those reflections publicly on our blog and welcome your comments and feedback.
We ask that our supporters join us in participating in Giving Tuesday by making donations to nonprofits founded by and/or led by BIPOC activists working in our Columbus community. We have compiled a short, not at all exhaustive list here. The list is open for editing and additions; please feel free to add and share. The list will stay active on our site.
If you would still like to donate to Erase the Space, please consider donating a portion of your designated donation to another organization who also serves our community. Then, please like, follow, share, and promote that organization to your social media circle and consider attending an event hosted by that nonprofit. These are small, easy ways we support the good work being done in our community and help push for equitable access to resources, publicity, power, and monetary support.