In Chapter 9, I was particularly interested in Brookfield’s discussion around acknowledging that racism is alive and well in me/us. Brookfield states that “what was missing from (his) teaching was a full disclosure of how the ideology of White supremacy was alive and well within (him)” (Brookfield, 2015, p. 113). Recently, I did several consecutive training sessions around the province about our enhanced planning process. During this time, I came to realize that as a middle-class white trainer, I needed to acknowledge my ignorance about the cultural diversity in the room to have any credibility with our very culturally diverse staff groups. Moving forward, I will take Brookfield’s advise around using narratives of my own struggles with diversity to open up conversations and introduce activities in our training. I have done this occasionally in the past, but after reading Brookfield’s thoughts about internalized racism and narratives, I believe it is important for me to be more intentional about sharing my own struggles in this area. I believe it is only by sharing our mutual awkwardness about cultural diversity that we can truly move forward in becoming a truly inclusive work place that can successfully support a diverse group of individuals and families.
Brookfield, S. D. (2015). The Skillful Teacher: On Technique, Trust, and Responsiveness in the Classroom
(3rd ed.). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.