What’s Going On: “Partisan” Worries, and Desires to Discuss Trump-Era Events in School

By Mica Pollock & Mariko Yoshisato

Background/Context: This article explores how the classic U.S. educator effort to stay politically “nonpartisan” when teaching became particularly complicated in an era of spiking K–12 harassment, when government officials openly targeted and denigrated populations on the basis of race, national origin, gender, sexuality, and religion. We share research on a pilot (2017–2019) of #USvsHate, an “anti-hate” initiative we designed and studied with K–12 educators and students in the politically mixed region of San Diego, California.

Link here.

No, It Isn’t Racist to Teach Antiracism

I wrote this OpEd featured on edweek.org. My goal was to support collaborative antiracist effort by clarifying how “antiracism is not some zero-sum game of ‘us’ vs. ‘them.’ It’s a collective investment in the human

“Anti-racism is about leveling the playing field of opportunity, dismantling opportunity barriers, benefiting
from the rich diversity of all communities, and treating all people humanely.”

Link to original article: https://www.edweek.org/leadership/opinion-no-it-isnt-racist-to-teach-anti-racism/2021/05

View article PDF here.

Exploring the Principles of Schooltalk

In March 2021, I spoke with principal Candace Hunstad, school instructional coach Brigid Dux, ESOL teacher/school equity lead Samantha Gauta (all of Fairhill Elementary), and district coordinator of professional learning/cultural responsiveness Junena Thomas — all educators from Fairfax County, Virginia — about their use of Schooltalk for sustained antiracist equity work at the school level. It was a really exciting discussion about how to go beyond initial use of books to long-term use of texts for change. Sharing here to support others in similarly sustained efforts!

Session guide here.


These lessons for K12+ students draw from nearly 20 national teacher-support organizations. I curated these lists for #USvsHate. I’m working right now to add youth-facing lessons based on Schooltalk and Everyday Antiracism.