The culture wars found a new target in 2021: trans youth. More than 100 laws were proposed to restrict the rights of trans individuals, especially kids. In this episode of Have You Heard, we’re joined by teacher, trans activist and co-host of the Southern Queeries podcast Aubree Calvin. Aubree helps us understand the origins of the right’s war on trans youth, and why the restriction of their access to health care and education is an issue that should concern every public education advocate.
Black students who are taught by teachers who attended an Historically Black College or University or HBCU fare better than their peers. That’s what Lavar Edmonds found as he dug into a trove of data from North Carolina schools. More intriguing still: while students with Black teachers show the biggest gains, the effect also held with white teachers who graduated from HBCUs. Edmonds, the runner up in the Have You Heard Graduate Student Research Contest, explains what he thinks is the “secret sauce” at HBCUs, and why his findings challenge some of the central assumptions of so-called “role-model effects” in education.
In state after state, GOP lawmakers are privatizing education and curbing democracy by changing the rules about how votes are cast and counted. Which raises an urgent question. Why are the same states that are rolling back democracy also intent on dismantling public education? We assembled an all-star cast to get some answers. Special guests: Derek Black, author of Schoolhouse Burning: Public Education and the Assault on American Democracy; and Noliwe Rooks, author of Cutting School: Privatization, Segregation, and the End of Public Education.
It’s the episode we’ve been looking forward to all year! Meet the winner of the 2021 Have You Heard Graduate Student Research Contest: Patrick Conway. When you listen to this episode, you’ll understand exactly why Patrick claimed this year’s top prize. His exploration of how we value prison education raises essential and relevant questions—about who is entitled to be educated at tax-payer expense, what kind of education they should receive, and how we view crime. Congratulations to Patrick, and a big thanks to his former student JD Linares for putting in a special appearance. You can find a complete transcript of the episode here.
Five decades after Boston’s bitter battles over busing helped stall the push for school desegregation, the issue is once again a policy priority in Massachusetts. What happened? Chalk it up to a generational shift, a racial reckoning, and a long-overdue acknowledgment that addressing the problem of Massachusetts’ increasingly segregated schools will also require tackling housing and transportation issues. Special guests: State Senator Brendan Crighton and METCO CEO Milly Arbaje-Thomas.
Episode transcript is here.