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First Person is where Chalkbeat features personal essays by educators, students, parents, and others trying to improve public education. Read our
submission guidelines here
September 11, 2017
I covered Tennessee’s ed beat for Chalkbeat. Here’s what I learned.
Reporter Grace Tatter shares six things about public education that she learned on the job at the Statehouse — and now takes with her to graduate school.
September 1, 2017
I’m a Houston geography teacher. This is my plan for our first day back — as soon as it arrives
By teaching about the flood, I hope I can play a small role in helping our city avoid repeating some of the tragic scenes I witnessed this week.
August 29, 2017
The idea of the American Dream works against my students. Here’s how ethnic studies could help.
For too many young people — white students as well as students of color — school rarely connects to critical concerns, a P-TECH teacher writes.
August 28, 2017
I went viral for walking my students home from school in Memphis. Here’s what got lost in the shuffle.
I was photographed walking students home in 2015, and the picture went viral. Two years later, I've changed tactics for trying to help young people.
August 17, 2017
‘I didn’t feel like I had anyone to ask for support’: Why it matters to have teachers who look like me
Writes a high school senior: "Going into my senior year, I like how diverse my teachers are now, but I wish I’d had the same experience when I was younger."
August 16, 2017
A Queens teacher on Charlottesville: ‘It can’t just be teachers of color’ offering lessons on race
Talking about racism in the classroom is the best way to fight it, she argues.
August 15, 2017
I grew up near Charlottesville and got a misleading education about Civil War history. Students deserve better.
In a disturbing irony, these white supremacists understand an aspect of history that I wish my peers understood from their time spent in school.
August 9, 2017
I was a winner in an academically segregated school. Now, I’m driven to advocate for the other side
A college student wonders what happens to his peers in his middle school's "traditional" program — and what he can do to make future students' experiences more equitable.
August 8, 2017
Cut from the same cloth: Why it matters that black male teachers like me aren’t alone in our schools
Being the only person of color at the school meant that I received a great deal of attention while still feeling alone — and under a great deal of pressure.
August 4, 2017
Why I’m not anxious about where my kids go to school — but do worry about the segregation that surrounds us
Mary Jo Cramb, a Nashville teacher and mother: "My surprisingly chill perspective comes mostly from a recognition of my privilege."
Politics & Policy
July 27, 2017
Yes, an A at one school may be a C at another. It’s time we address the inequity that got us there
Grades are different from school to school, district to district, and I suspect, state to state. And it presents a problem that cannot easily be solved.
July 20, 2017
Two fewer testing days in New York? Thank goodness. Here’s what else our students need
My students are concerned that all of their hard work throughout the year will boil down to six intense days of testing.
July 18, 2017
My high school told me to apply to 100 colleges — and I almost lost myself in the process
"High schools have become obsessed with million-dollar scholars, and it’s hurting students," says Anisah Karim of Memphis.
July 18, 2017
When my students got aggressive, my school agreed to help. Here’s how we changed a class reputation
No one had taken the time to teach them concrete strategies for coping with the stressful situations they faced in and outside of school. So we did.
July 14, 2017
How one Harlem teacher gave his student — the ‘Chris Rock of third grade’ — a chance to shine
Ruben Brosbe shared his story at Teachable Moments, a live storytelling event for teachers.
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