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Students sitting at large desks in classroom
Photo by Christine Cousins
Feature

On Privilege: Building Community Through Classroom Conversations

Mandi Hardy

What Are The Outcomes?

As the year goes on, we continue talking about privilege and the role it plays in society. There is a natural tie-in to many of the conversations we have in class. Most discussions around “whose voice is missing” are really conversations about privilege, and it’s an important perspective to consider when talking about point of view and bias. Students even find that having learned about privilege actually comes in handy in their own lives. These are the real situations that our students face, and many of these situations are ones that we might not be aware of because we haven’t faced them ourselves. The work of recognizing our own privilege is constant and ongoing. We must look at daily situations from a different perspective; we must think critically to achieve awareness of what we have taken for granted; and we must speak out when we see injustices taking place. It’s the least we can do.

Author’s Note:  All the names of the students quoted in this article were fl agged by Spellcheck, except for the name of the one white student. This is a simple, yet profound, example of the way Euro-Western privilege is reinforced.

Mandi Hardy is a member of the Peel Elementary Teacher Local.

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