Elizabeth Warren’s teaching style, more St. Louis transfer problems, teaching cultural sensitivity: What Education Lab is reading this week

Joy Resmovits

By

Seattle Times assistant metro editor

Sick of reading about the local elections? I don’t know how you could be, but in case you are, we’re sharing some stellar education stories from across the country. Only one is directly related to that other election that’s been dominating your newsfeed this summer.

Subscribe to the newsletter to see our favorite education stories from around the country in your inbox first, plus our best features from the week and, sometimes, upcoming Seattle-area education events. The newsletter also includes opportunities for readers to join the conversation.

Elizabeth Warren’s teaching style

In an interview with The Cut’s Rebecca Traister, presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren went deep on her classroom strategy. Warren wanted to become a teacher since she was in second grade, and has taught students with disabilities in New Jersey and Sunday-school classes in Texas. She would open her Harvard law class not by introducing herself but by calling on a student and asking what “assumpsit,” a legal term, means.

It’s a deliberate move, Traister reports, to show “that not knowing is part of the process of learning.” But how helpful will Warren’s extreme professorial nature be for her presidential run, especially as she clings to a part of her identity that’s also “a specific kind of feminized archetype?”

Yet another disruption for Ferguson families

Families are caught in the bureaucratic crosshairs of yet another change to the transfer process in the public schools in the St. Louis, Missouri, area, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. In 2015, a report after the shooting and protests in nearby Ferguson charged the state with changing its accreditation system, saying it “fails(s) to fix the schools that have lost accreditation or to address the core issues that led to losing accreditation.” Now that Normandy High School is no longer fully unaccredited, students finishing elementary or middle school are forced to transfer, yet again.

How one school is tackling a lack of teacher diversity

The Hechinger Report spent time inside a school in Delaware that’s trying to better connect white teachers with their students of color. The teachers read books such as Robin DiAngelo’s “White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism,” discussed racial biases and learned about culturally responsive practices. It hasn’t been smooth sailing: Some teachers walked out of a mandatory conversation about the impact of race on learning.

Also from Hechinger — Why every English teacher should assign Toni Morrison.


Joy Resmovits:

jresmovits@seattletimes.com; on Twitter: @joy_resmovits. is The Seattle Times education editor. She was born and raised in New York, and came to The Times from Southern California, where she worked on education coverage for the Los Angeles Times.


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