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,