Teaching While White

Tough, essential questions.

Young Teachers Collective

Co-authored by Melissa Katz and Molly Tansey

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This past summer Mia McKenzie of Black Girl Dangerous published a piece entitled “All the White Teachers I Wish I Never Had.” In the piece, she discusses how during her early school years her entire world was Black, filled with family, friends and teachers who supported her academic curiosity.

“As a very bright, gifted Black girl, having Black teachers, mostly Black women, who saw my giftedness and encouraged and nurtured it, meant everything. These were teachers who could look at me and see themselves. They could see their children, their hopes, their dreams. These were teachers who could be as proud of me when I did well as my own family was, who could understand me when I talked about my life, and who knew how to protect the spirit of a gifted Blackgirlchild in a world they knew would try…

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