About Emma-Kate Schaake

Emma-Kate Schaake is in her fifth year of teaching high school English in Washington. She is passionate about educational equity in curriculum design, classroom practices, teacher leadership, professional development, and student voice. She writes about her ongoing journey to unlearn myopic history, self reflect, and think critically about her role as an educator. She can be found on Instagram @mschaake


Dr. Gloria Ladson-Billings: Culturally Relevant Education & Critical Race Theory 

“Until we begin to carefully examine the way race and racialized thinking influence our work, we will continue to perpetuate destructive thinking about the capabilities of learners based on race.”

Gloria Ladson-Billings is the former Kellner Family Distinguished Professor of Urban Education in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction and faculty affiliate in the Department of Educational Policy Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. 

With over 50 years in education, she is one of the seminal scholars of culturally responsive pedagogy. Her 1994 book Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children is a foundational text for understanding that truly effective teaching should engage students’ communities and promote their critical consciousness about structural racism and oppression. She investigates how Critical Race Theory is a valuable tool for making sense of persistent racial inequities in US schools.

In an era when the highest office has disavowed Critical Race Theory on the basis of white fragility, Ladson-Billings’ intellectual lens on systemic inequities would be a breath of fresh air. Click here for our next pick. 

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