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ERIC Number: ED541256
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 30
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
Speak up at School: How to Respond to Everyday Prejudice, Bias and Stereotypes. A Guide for Teachers
Willoughby, Brian
Southern Poverty Law Center (NJ1)
Many of the questions received by the magazine column "Ask Teaching Tolerance" are from educators seeking advice about how to respond when someone--a student, a colleague, even a parent--uses biased language or stereotypes in school. This booklet is a response to these questions. It's for educators who want to develop the skills to speak up themselves and who want to help their students find the courage to speak up too. What exactly is biased language, one might ask? Slurs, put-downs and other negative labels, of course. Educators know these can start as early as kindergarten when, for instance, a boy is teased about being "girly" because he like dolls. And everyone is too familiar with the queasy feeling that comes when a colleague makes a joke that relies on stereotypes for its humor. No single word covers all this ground. In this guide, the authors refer to it as biased language, and to the larger problem as bias. Educators know that many, if not most, of these remarks are said in ignorance, but that some reflect real hostility. This guide is for the adults in the school. It offers advice about how to respond to remarks made by students and by other adults and gives guidance for helping students learn to speak up as well. The authors believe that modeling the kind of behavior they want from students is one of the most effective ways of teaching it. They also know that schools are hierarchies, for the adults and for the students. Appended are: (1) For Students; (2) Role-playing; (3) Changing School Policies and Taking Action; and (4) Resources. [Contributors include Nancy Brakke, Amber Makaiau, Vanessa D'Egidio, Tracy Oliver-Gary, Sonia Galaviz, Dan Rubin, Barbara Hemann, and Christine Sipes.]
Southern Poverty Law Center. 400 Washington Avenue, Montgomery, AL 36104. Tel: 334-956-8200; Web site:
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Southern Poverty Law Center