Eco-racism as an example of misplaced energy in teacher training

Several people emailed me about the definition of eco-racism. Basically it is racial discrimination in environmental policy, as in dumping toxic waste in minority communities. I appreciate this as a valid and serious issue. Our society has many such disturbing tendencies, and all citizens should educate themselves in order to make democratic choices based on their beliefs. However. Macro-society issues like eco-racism, or gender inequality, or class differences, are often prioritized in education schools ahead of the actual business of education, which is teaching and learning. I believe that an educated society is a better society, and that educating people (particularly those who have traditionally been powerless) can help to solve a lot of these troubling issues (for example–educated people are better at advocating for themselves and their communities politically). Thus, I am troubled that teachers (or teachers in training) are forced to learn about HUGE societal issues that they cannot possibly solve by themselves before (or in place of!!!) the techniques necessary to become a great teacher.

–Guest blogger Newoldschoolteacher

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