129. AI as Thought Partner

Dr. Richard Charles has probably forgotten more about mathematics and technology than most of us will ever know.

This brilliant scholar and change-maker of Trinidadian and Venezuelan heritage joined Gerardo for a conversation that is only the tip of the iceberg. An authentically intellectual and curious learner, Dr. Charles represents most what what we dream of being in school district leadership. He is philosophical and a problem-solver, and his passion for prime numbers is only out-matched by his determination that ALL DPS students have access to the best education available to them.

Dr. Charles shares his passion for ways in which generative AI can support us at all levels of education. You will feel a little out of your depth on this episode, but stick with it. There is much to glean from this conversation.

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The State of Education with Amie Baca-Oehlert

The state of public education is…tough right now. But it isn’t because of teachers or students. It’s because our systems have spent too much time overthinking the challenges we face, when in reality, it’s all about respect, resources, and professionalism.

Colorado Education Association present Amie Baca-Oehlert joins Gerardo and Kev to discuss the state of education. She names the harsh realities but also demonstrates the simple ways that we can right this ship for ALL kids.

Read the state of education report here!

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Chicanologues 08. Cielito Lindo Books Founder Leticia Ordáz and Sharing NUESTRAS Historias

Leticia Ordaz is a Publisher, Award-Winning Bilingual Children’s Book Author, Literacy Advocate, and Television News Anchor/Reporter.

Leticia is the founder of the bilingual publishing house Cielito Lindo Books and a ten-time award-winning children’s book author at the International Latino Book Awards, the largest Latino Book Awards in the world. 

A proud Mexican-American, Leticia is an Emmy Award-winning anchor/reporter in Sacramento, California, where she’s covered some of the biggest stories in the country. 

Leticia is the author of The Adventures of Mr. Macaw, That Girl on TV Could Be Me! The Journey of a Latina News Anchor, Mr. Macaw’s Paleta Adventure, The Carousel King and the Space Mission, Mr. Macaw Lost in the Big City, and 2024 release Super Peanut and the Big Bully: The Power of Kindness. 

As a literacy ambassador, she is excited to share bilingual stories with children around the world. The mother of two young Latino boys is working hard to break barriers and change statistics that currently show only 7 percent of American children’s books feature Latinx characters or subjects, and only 10 percent of authors and illustrators in the US are Latinx. 

She recently teamed up with the Antelope Valley Union High School District to publish the Anthology, We Come From Greatness. The heartfelt project shared the stories of 88 migrant youth from Los Angeles County and transformed students into published authors. All of the proceeds benefit a scholarship program for the district. 

When Leticia is not on the news being a voice for her community, she is busy visiting schools, hospitals, and orphanages to spread the love of reading in English and Spanish. 

Reach out to bring her to your school for a dynamic assembly.

CielitoLindoBooks.com, Cielito[email protected]

Twitter: @LeticiaOrdazTV, @CielitoLindoBks LinkedIn: Leticia Ordaz 

Facebook: @CielitoLindoBooks. 

Instagram: @LeticiaOrdazTV, @CielitoLindoBooks

“Belonging is the Outcome” Carney Sandoe’s Kim Garner and Brandon Jacobs Discuss Forum DEIB

We are partnering with Carney, Sandoe & Associates to bring you cutting-edge insights and opportunities to learn from and with members of their communities. In today’s episode, Kim Garner and Brandon Jacobs join us to discuss DEIB (the B stands for Belonging), the importance of DEIB work across all educational spaces, and the chance for folx in the Philly area to attend their Hiring Forum DEIB event this coming Friday!

Kim graduated from Suffolk University with a B.A. in International Business. She began working at Carney, Sandoe & Associates in 2000 as an Operations Associate, and became Associate Director of Operations in 2005, Director of Operations in 2006, and Director of Operations and Conferences in 2010. Kim was promoted to Managing Associate in 2012.

As Chief Operating Officer, Placement Group, Kim manages operational budget, oversees operations staff, and explores new technologies to optimize efficiency within the Placement Group. She coordinates hiring, training, and onboarding for new employees, and plans and coordinates all aspects of faculty recruitment conferences, located in cities each year across the country.

Kim has also spearheaded the development of CS&A’s Women’s* Institute (which held its inaugural event in 2017) which focuses on empowerment, professional and personal development, and mentorship of women in education at all stages of their careers. Kim is extremely passionate about the importance of women supporting other women and providing safe space to learn from one another.

Brandon is Practice Leader, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging (DEIB) Consulting Practice, Search & Consulting Services and also supports our Head of School, Key Administrator, Catholic Schools, and Diversity Leadership Search Practices. Brandon has been instrumental in growing our DEIB Search and Consulting Practices. He has worked with dozens of independent schools, colleges and universities, and education organizations, running retained searches for DEIB practitioners and leading consulting engagements around implicit bias, equitable hiring, BIPOC faculty and staff retention, and other topics.

Thanks to financial assistance from New Jersey SEEDS, a nonprofit organization that places high-achieving students from low-income families at selective day and boarding schools across the country, Brandon and his three younger brothers were able to attend The Hill School (PA). At the predominantly white boarding school, Brandon served as the first Black All-School President and, seven years following his high school graduation, would return to his alma mater to assume the dual roles of Director of Inclusion and Diversity and Student Activities Coordinator. While at The Hill School, Brandon was also Director of Student Activities, Class Dean, and Assistant Director of College Advising.

Before joining CS&A, Brandon served as the Director of Diversity and Inclusion at The Shipley School (PA) where he led the development and implementation of policies, procedures, and programs that sustained an inclusive school community and curriculum and fulfilled the School’s diversity and inclusion goals. Working closely with school administrators, he directed recruitment and retention initiatives to broaden the diversity of the student body and among faculty and staff.

To learn more, visit www.carneysandoe.com/toodope.

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126. Stop Resisting Director and Producer donnie l. betts

I had no idea that January was National Mentoring Month, but this is perfect timing. At a critical moment in my life, donnie l. betts, legendary actor, director, playwright and filmmaker, but most importantly, mentor to so many.

I was fifteen when I met donnie, and he changed my life. He showed me that men of color from my neighborhood could be artists and movers, and that art could matter. We have remained in touch for over thirty years, and it is my profound honor to bring him and his story to you.

In this episode, you will hear how donnie came to the arts, the people he has met and learned from, and his undying conviction that art can make a difference. As in his new film, Stop Resisting, which, in the wake of unending police violence visited on Black communities in Denver and beyond. donnie continues to leverage art and stories to affect change, and he shares his passion with us.

Go to Carney Sandoe’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Forum this month!

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Teaching While Unapologetically Palestinian

For nearly fourteen weeks, genocidal events have been brought upon Gaza. To be honest, we struggled with how to best show support. We are a podcast that centers Teachers of Color and issues of Human Rights and Justice for all. So we have chosen to bring you stories of Palestinian American teachers. These stories are long-form, so they defy the sound-bite 24-hour news cycle. We ask participants to tell their stories with authenticity and courage. So yeah, this episode is longer.

Amal is a teacher in California who is proud to be Palestinian. She knows that her perspective is different, living stateside and not in Gaza, which has been described as of January 7 as “uninhabitable” by the United Nations. The days drag along as Amal tries to teach and support students. The courage to teach while your world burns is something Kevin and I cannot fathom.

But know that this story has emotion, passion, and knowledge. You will learn things that have not made it into the news cycle. You will learn how one teacher sees and experiences this horror.

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Dopemas Time is Here!

Gerardo and Kevin are here to accompany you through this holiday season! Whether you celebrate or not, we gotchu, and we hope to bring some affirmation and encouragement to you in these times that defy description.

As you know, Kevin has moved into school leadership, halfway through his first year as an assistant principal. He shares the highs, the lows, and reflects on being positioned to make a greater impact for the students in his community. Gerardo shares the hard-earned lessons of sixteen months as a central office manager, and shares the encouragement he has found in his work.

But ya boys haven’t forgotten what it’s like to be a classroom teacher. Teaching is our mother tongue, and no matter what other jobs we learn and become proficient, conversant, even fluent in, our hearts and minds will always be those of teachers. We hope we can encourage you to rest, reflect, and appreciate yourself.

Plus we share our holiday wish lists.

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122. Teaching Palestine as a Social Justice Movement with Abeer Shinnawi

For over two months, violence has raged on the Gaza Strip. Since the world snapped to attention on October 7, just under 20,000 Palestinians and 1300 Israelis (around 400 IDF soldiers) have died in the so-called “Israel-Hamas War” a carefully curated framing of the violence. This is an awful moment, and has led a number of experts to name the actions visited upon Palestinians as genocidal.

Kevin and Gerardo join the conversation. Perhaps later than some would hope. But we wanted to learn, listen, and elevate before seizing a social media moment.

Enter Abeer Shinnawi, our friend, a Palestinian teacher in the United States. Abeer calls upon us to teach the Palestinian struggle as a social justice/civil rights movement. She shares with us the privilege she has by living in the United States, but the pain she feels, as the Palestinian experience has been largely minimized, demonized, and erased. But in the midst of it all, she still believes that teachers can make a difference, to help students see that there is a civil rights imperative at work here.

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