Read and watch an interview with our kindergarten Spanish teacher, Reena Valvani, who was named a HEROE (Hella-awesome Educator Revitalizing Oakland Education for students) by Educate 78.
By Jamilah King
Violence pervades many neighborhoods of East Oakland leaving youth subject to its physical and emotional repercussions. This article discusses how many communities – particularly communities of color – suffer from PTSD. This form of constant post-traumatic stress, resulting from day-to-day trauma, has been more specifically coined as CPTSD – complex post-traumatic stress disorder. This stress, caused by poverty, violence, and the overall neglect of a community, place youth at far higher risk of death than those who don’t experience such adverse living conditions.
Public schools within these neighborhoods don’t often acknowledge that violence and its impacts on learning and success, therefore perpetuating its existence and negative effects. Roses in Concrete Community school offers the pedagogy and dedicated, well-trained staff to combat those harsh environments and celebrate the tenacity of the children who are forced to live among it; Roses is dedicated to stopping the cycle of violence and growing confident, empowered youth with bright futures.
The Wraparound Approach | A new dual-immersion charter, Roses in Concrete, debuts in East Oakland and strives to function as a center of health for the neighborhood. | By Emily Wilson | Read full article here.
Read the perspectives of three team leaders – Vidrale Franklin, Jeff Duncan-Andrade, and Lil Milagro Henriquez to learn what inspired and excited them about the Roses in Concrete approach to education. All educators have found, through their experiences, that children who live with some level of trauma have a harder time in the classroom; therefore, a school must care for the “toxic stress” of its students with communication, understanding, and provision of resources.
This work-in-progress video refers to Jeff Duncan-Andrade’s research in Tucson, AZ, looking into the remarkable success of the Ethnic Studies program in the Tucson Unified School District. Arizona’s new Attorney General Tom Horne has built his political career by pushing legislation to outlaw this program. Duncan-Andrade and Horne were scheduled to debate in the summer of 2010, but Horne pulled out abruptly after a rough appearance on CNN. This interview was conducted shortly thereafter.