We speak with Dr. Brian Jones, director of the New York Public Library’s Center for Educators and Schools, which provides all sorts of free resources to teachers and school administrators. Public schools, for all their flaws, are centers of power and potential for teachers and parents. As a historian, Dr. Jones draws parallels between Booker T.  Washington and Geoffrey Canada of the Harlem Children’s Zone. In the aftermath of civil rights struggles, both accommodated the powerful and opposed collective efforts for systemic change. 


00:00-00:47 Intros

00:47-03:55 Corporate school reforms vs. unions

03:55-09:04 Corporate reforms: who wins, who loses; public schools as a place where everyone is entitled to services 

09:04-11:57 School choice and neighborhoods; collective vs. individual change

11:57-19:38 Democratic and Republican support for charters and choice

19:38-23:07 Complicated history of schools and neighborhoods

23:07-24:41 Historical Black leadership in fight for public schools

24:41-30:21 Efforts to separate racial justice from economic justice

30:21-41:47 Booker T. Washington and Geoffrey Canada

41:47-45:46 Implementation of progressive steps: keeping the redistributive potential

45:46-50:51 Jean Anyon

50:51- Outro


Click here to see the full transcript of this episode. 

Soundtrack by Podington Bear

Image: www.nysna.org