Our superintendent met with me recently to talk about my professional growth goals. One of my goals is to closely, uncomfortably, and necessarily challenge my own biases and understand my privilege. A colleague recommended the two books below. I’ve finished So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo and am about a third of the way through Waking Up White and Finding Myself in the Story of Race by Debby Irving.
Why, at this point in a 36 year career, is it important to examine biases, prejudice, and privilege? Because to do better work as a leader, a learner, and communicator, I need to understand from where I come, from where my thinking and opinions come, and challenge them. I know I can do better.
A couple of quotes that are guiding my thinking and learning now.
“Ask yourself: Am I trying to be right, or am I trying to do better?”
“Yet I don’t believe that avoiding all potentially upsetting conversations serves anyone.”
“Right through my senior year of college, life exposed me mostly to other versions of myself and the customs and traditions I considered normal.”
“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.” -Anais Nin
“Privilege is a strange thing in that you notice it least when you have it most.”
And this whomper quote,
“What else don’t I know?
Fife School District
39 years as an educator.
16 years teacher
3 years assistant principal
12 years principal
8 years Assistant Superintendent
BA, Washington State University
MAEd, Washington State University
Previous member of AWSP Legislative Committee
Previous member of UW Tacoma PEAB, Administrative Certification
Established and maintained Fife’s first website for 7 years
Present work includes establishing the first Teaching/Learning/Innovation department in the Fife School District. Examples of responsibilities include: teacher/administrator professional development, assessment, TPEP, curriculum/materials review, 24 credit requirement, technology levy leadership, teacher/administrator bargaining.
Initiatives underway in Fife, as a result of new TLI Department: AVID, OER, Curriculum and Materials reviews, Student Perception Pilot with CSTP, Google Expedition
Cofounder of Educational Internet Communications, LLC. Marketed and sold one of the first online grade checking programs in the US. Consulted with Seattle Educational Internet Company for 2 years.
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