Without hesitation, someone decided to reply with “Why not move to a country where there isn’t white oppressors then?” It was the usual fare for folks who tweet with a social justice framework. The anonymous trolls range anywhere from 16 year olds getting their kicks from beating down “social justice warriors” to older folks touting flags, dogs, and egg avatars. I’m not fazed.
But this one made me do a double take. Because, in many ways, the current education reform movement treats longstanding educators, especially of color, as disposable. Indeed, educators of color seemingly have a choice to teach wherever they wish. They can teach at a private school with a plethora of resources, only a tint of racial diversity, and a truly safe space for kids to learn. This space won’t get shut down from test scores or incompetent adults. They can teach at a charter school and work longer hours, expertise need not apply. They may get their supplies paid for, but if they come off-script, they get their boundaries quickly redrawn for them.
Or they can teach at a public school. They might want to teach at a well-resourced and well-renowned school, but chances are, they’ll be told they’d be better off teaching at a low-income school with mostly students of color.