“What do I do?”
“What do I do next?”
We hear these questions a lot. The sentiment is genuine, but we believe the better question is “Where should I begin?”(Teaching for Justice and Belonging, chapter 3)
Ironically, emboldened White supremacy on display has motivated masses of educators, parents, and leaders to arouse the value of antiracism education. In droves and at varying speeds, we are intentionally moving from stagnant status quo to actively dismantling racist beliefs, practices, and outcomes. However, in a hyper-racialized society, where antiracism is the exception instead of the norm, the path to anti-racism seems daunting. But when we have clarity – of the problem, of motivation, of vision – the path unfolds just as a seed eventually unfolds or blooms into a flower.
I am a Black scholar, educator, and mom, with a White husband and three multiethnic children. I began my antiracism journey long before I even could identify it as such. Over decades, I collected all types of data as Jesus invited me to education, which roused and hurled me toward transformation which launched me into liberation. Along the way, I lived, I embodied, I cultivated, I created. Even in the midst of what seems like socio-political chaos, I breathe the air of consonance because I am deeply rooted, grounded, and have no choice but to bear good fruit.
As an educator and parent, I am advantaged to strategically foster education that inspires a culture of true belonging, liberation, and justice for all. I was ecstatic to collaborate with Dr. Tehia Starker Glass on this project because she is also a mothers-scholar-educator who gleans from her own journey toward systemic change – disrupting the racism embedded in perspectives and standard educational content. Along the way, we’ve watched many well-meaning folks either refuse to start, get stuck, give up and/or stunt their own growth and ultimately the growth of their family, school, organization or community. What we found most common is that antiracism education is conflated with diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) training. As such, where people actually require a developmentally appropriate, guided, and sustainable pathway toward systemic change, they opt for a one-and-done workshop, a check the ‘diversity’ box keynote, or some type of ‘intensive’ is sufficient. In other words, people want significant outcomes with very little investment.
Dr. Glass and I wrote this book to show what a developmentally appropriate, healthy, sustainable, growth journey can look like. We align our approach with a gardening metaphor to emphasize the significance of endowed growth intelligence, intentional strategic practices, persistence, and patience. As with learning any complex and complicated concept or topic (e.g. calculus, physics, etc.), we can gain competency and proficiency when it’s broken down into digestible, comprehensible parts or stages. While the antiracism journey can be challenging, with clarity of vision, understanding, and commitment, you can avoid unnecessary hardships and stumbling blocks.
In Teaching for Justice and Belonging – A Journey for Educators & Parents, we are not offering you a perpetual box to check, but a life-giving journey to experience and embrace. This is our loving letter to co-laboring educators and parents encouraging you to embody the transformation and be the change we all deserve. Like seeds, we were designed to grow and flourish. We can do this!
LAUNCH & LEARN • August 23rd
Celebrate the release of our collaboration by joining us in a conversation about cultivating justice and belonging through an antiracism education lens. Dr. Glass and I will share the motivation for the project, behind the scenes stories, and more! You will have a chance to win prizes and ask questions.
Lucretia is a wife, mom of three, and a former college professor, who founded Brownicity with the purpose of making scholarly-informed, antiracism education accessible in order to inspire a culture of true belonging and justice for all. Her 2017 TED Talk, ‘Children will light up the world if we don’t keep them in the dark’ is well received, as well as her books and courses:
- What LIES Between Us – Fostering First Steps Toward Racial Healing (2016)
- Hues of You – An Activity Book for Learning About the Skin You Are In (2022)
- Teaching for Justice and Belonging – A Journey for Educators and Parents (August 2022, coauthored with Tehia Starker-Glass, PhD)