Making Great Teachers Even Better

Parker recently welcomed author, consultant and speaker Dr. Eddie Moore Jr. and author and professor Dr. Marguerite W. Penick-Parks to the school for a special workshop. In 2017, Moore and Penick-Parks collaborated with Princeton University professor Ali Michael to write The Guide for White Women Who Teach Black Boys (TGWWWTBB), a book that brings together research, activities, personal stories and more to help the reader embrace the deep realities and thrilling potential of empowering black boys to dream, believe and achieve in the classroom. 

When Upper School math teacher Victoria Lee first come across this book, she knew it would be a great resource for her peers and connected with Lower and Intermediate School Technology Integration Specialist Sarah Beebe, Middle and Upper School Librarian Annette Lesak and Upper School English teacher Cory Zeller. Working with the support of Associate Principal Ruth Jurgensen, they assembled a group of faculty to read and discuss the tome and its ideas via a formalized study group in the fall. Since the TGWWWTBB study group’s formation, faculty have had the opportunity to work through the ideas in the book as a group, even participating in virtual meetings with author Ali Michael as part of their study.

Sensing the excitement of our faculty and seizing upon the moment at hand, Jurgensen reached out to Moore directly and invited him and Penick-Parks to Parker the day following their ISACS Workshop in Chicago to orchestrate a similar experience just for Parker teachers studying the book.

While at Parker, Moore and Penick-Parks’s workshop focused on the current status of race in America as well as statistics that support the need for work directed at the opportunity gap and African-American youth in the educational system. Using video footage from interviews and thought-provoking activities and conversation prompts, Moore and Penick-Parks facilitated an experiential workshop to generate new avenues of reflection and action for white female teachers at Parker. 
Jurgensen is working with Moore and Penick-Parks to hold a workshop at Parker in June to benefit teachers in Chicago Public Schools. More on that to come!

Click here for photos from the experience.

More information on Dr. Eddie Moore Jr. available here.
Francis W. Parker School educates students to think and act with empathy, courage and clarity as responsible citizens and leaders in a diverse democratic society and global community.