23 episodes

A podcast dedicated to changing the way we talk and think about education. We all know that the field isn't perfect but there is plenty of awesome work happening everyday. Listen in as I profile educators who are positively impacting their staff, students, and communities.

The Counter Narrative: Changing the Way We Talk (and think) About Education Charles Williams

    • Education
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

A podcast dedicated to changing the way we talk and think about education. We all know that the field isn't perfect but there is plenty of awesome work happening everyday. Listen in as I profile educators who are positively impacting their staff, students, and communities.

    Season 2, Episode 7: Interview with Carly Spina

    Season 2, Episode 7: Interview with Carly Spina

    Welcome to the Counter Narrative Podcast, a show designed to change the way we talk, and think, about education. By sharing stories of successes and triumphs, we aim to challenge the dominant narrative that often negatively portrays our disenfranchised populations.

    I’m your host, Charles Williams. An educator for 15 years, a current school principal, and an educational consultant.

    In this episode, I chat with Carly Spina, an educator with 15 years of experience in Multilingual Education, including her service as an EL teacher, a third-grade bilingual classroom teacher, and a district-wide EL/Bilingual/Dual Language Instructional Coach. She is currently serving 8 schools (EC-8) in a linguistically rich community of over 60 languages and over 800 active EL students. Spina has engaged in the successful co-creation of several parent outreach programs, Title I tutoring programs for students in grades 3-5, mentoring programs for middle school students, co-teaching initiatives, and more. She is deeply passionate about equity and advocacy for multilingual learners and fights for access and inclusive opportunities for kids and families. Spina actively fights against food insecurity in the community she serves. She has spoken at various national conferences and events and has received several awards over the years, including the Illinois Education Association Reg Weaver Human & Civil Rights Award in 2015 and the Distinguished Service Award for Excellence in the Team Category for EL Community Engagement in 2019. She was the WIDA Featured Educator in April 2019 and was named a Paul Harris Fellow in July of 2019. Spina is an active member of the EL/Bilingual community on social media and enjoys networking and growing with teachers and leaders across the country.  She is currently working on her first book with EduMatch Publishing.

    During our chat, we talked about the need for us to change the systems in which we operate. She shared her experiences working with parents of linguistically diverse students and the importance of amplifying their voices, not speaking on their behalf. Spina also examined the varied definitions of parental involvement as they shift due to cultural differences. Maybe this is a reflection of perspective and not attitude. We also discussed methods of engaging the community, beyond simply checking off tasks, and instead embedding into our everyday practices. She encourages educators to embrace their statuses as change agents and recognize that there are no small wins. In fact, incremental gains lead to monumental success.

    I hope that you enjoy this episode as much as I enjoyed recording it.

    Be sure to follow Carly on Twitter @MrsSpinasClass and check out her district at #Glenview34.






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    • 28 min
    Season 2, Episode 6 Pause to Ponder: Our First Week Back

    Season 2, Episode 6 Pause to Ponder: Our First Week Back

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    • 8 min
    Season 2, Episode 5: Interview with Chey & Pav

    Season 2, Episode 5: Interview with Chey & Pav

    Welcome to the Counter Narrative Podcast, a show designed to change the way we talk, and think, about education. By sharing stories of successes and triumphs, we aim to challenge the dominant narrative that often negatively portrays our disenfranchised populations.

    I’m your host, Charles Williams. An educator for 15 years, a current school principal, and an educational consultant.

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    In this episode I chat with Chey & Pav, co-hosts of The Staff Room Podcast and djs of the weekly radio show, The Drive. This is a first for these two experienced teachers from the greater Toronto area in Ontario, Canada as they have never been a guest on someone else’s show. Pav Wander, also known as Wander Woman, is now serving in an elementary school. She served five years as a middle school science and math teacher in the same school that she attended as a student. Chey, on the other hand, hails from Ottawa, but has served as a language and PE teacher for just over 20 years in the same middle school as his co-host.

    During our chat, they share how they began their podcasting journey by simply allowing their passion for education to flourish in other arenas. By speaking with, not at, Chey and Pav have not only developed an impressive network of educators that have undoubtedly benefited but they have also learned and grown through this process to become better educators themselves. We also discussed the power of building relationships and how shared experiences, such as those that we are currently experiencing with this global pandemic, help to strengthen and validate the work that we are doing. The conversation continued as we explored how educators can, and should, amplify their voices, which can be done through so many formats and mediums. As a bonus we get to hear the background story of why Chey is known as the Gym Guy.

    Enjoy.

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    Check out Chey & Pav here 

    The Staff Room Podcast:

    Twitter     Podcast

    The Drive:

    Twitter     Show

    Check out these great shoutouts

    www.schoolrubric.com

    www.voiced.ca

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    For more information about the host, visit his website or connect with him on Twitter.


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    • 49 min
    Season 2, Episode 4: Pause to Ponder - Nice White Parents

    Season 2, Episode 4: Pause to Ponder - Nice White Parents

    Years ago, producer Chana Joffe-Walt started reporting on one school in New York. She thought the story was about segregation and inequality in public schools. But the more she looked into it, the more she realized she was witnessing something else. She was seeing the inordinate power of white parents at this school.

    This episode shares three themes that presented themselves to me as I listened to this five-part series hosted by The New York Times Company - that very few people are willing to put in the work necessary to address equity; that equality means leveling the playing field and that usually translates to those with more typically receive less while those who have often received less begin to receive more (sacrifice for greater good); and that issues become real when they begin to impact those in power. 

    This reflective piece highlights not just my struggle as an educational leader combating systemic issues of racism and oppression but with my own understanding of the often hidden forces driving these systems and my eventual acceptance these are more than just misguided notions. 

    • 12 min
    Interview with Casey Jakubowski

    Interview with Casey Jakubowski

    In this episode, I chat with Casey Jakubowsi, an educational researcher out of New York. Although he was born in Buffalo, New York, Casey and his parents moved throughout the state because of his father’s work. Casey received undergraduate degrees from Fredonia State University, Binghamton State University, and University of Buffalo before completing his doctoral degree at Suny Albany where he studied educational leadership with a focus on rural education. He started his academic career in rural education and spent a large amount of time working with those living in the commonly unknown spaces between the various small cities in upstate New York, an area vastly different from the populous urban areas that make up much of the southern portion of the state. Casey even took these experiences and transformed them into his book, “Thinking About Teaching.” You may also be surprised to know that he is an Eagle Scout.

    During our chat, we discuss the commonly held misconceptions about rural education, that they are “backwards” or “deficient.” Casey pushes back against these beliefs pointing out an urban normativity that prioritizes a different set of standards. In fact, he points out that the struggles that so many schools are experiencing with adapting to this forced change of remote learning are not new for many rural schools because they have become resourceful after spending decades adapting to issues not often present in urban settings. Casey also shares the need to provide wrap around services for our students and their families and how we define and provide resources for education. He even provides three great suggestions on how we can all improve the educational experience for everyone.

    Enjoy.

    Find a copy of his book here.

    Follow Casey on Twitter @CaseyJ_edu


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    This episode is sponsored by
    · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app

    • 40 min
    Pause to Ponder - Principal Permissions

    Pause to Ponder - Principal Permissions

    Despite being told that it's not always necessary to ask for permission, I often found myself granting permissions for what I thought was clearly established expectations. For that reason, I decided to begin our school year with my five Principal Permissions. 

    1. Permission to learn and grow.

    2. Permission to take risks.

    3. Permission to fail.

    4. Permission to love.

    5. Permission to have fun.

    It was my hope that these permissions would clarify any misunderstanding that I believed in the expertise of my staff and that I wanted them to be the amazing educators that I knew that they could be. I did not want them to feel as if they were constrained by policies and politics. 

    They have taken full advantage of these permissions and have produced some amazing results. 

    • 13 min

Customer Reviews

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1 Rating

AvivaVancouver ,

Awesome!

Even with only one episode and a bonus episode I can tell this is going to be a fantastic podcast. Charles Williams brings a wealth of experience to the table as an interviewer and is asking really important questions about the state of education. Can’t wait for more!

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