If you want to understand what’s wrong with our public schools, you have to look at what is arguably the most powerful force in shaping them: white parents. A five-part series from the makers of Serial and The New York Times. Hosted by Chana Joffe-Walt.
1: The Book of Statuses
A group of parents take one big step together.
2: 'I Still Believe in It'
White parents in the 1960s fought to be part of a new, racially integrated school. Where’d they go?
3: ‘This Is Our School, How Dare You?’
We saw what happens when white families come into the school. What happens when they stay out?
4: 'Here’s Another Fun Thing You Can Do'
Is it possible to limit the power of white parents?
5: ‘We Know It When We See It’
An unexpected last chapter. Some white parents start behaving differently.
Introducing: Nice White Parents
A new limited series about building a better school system, and what gets in the way.
Good for the most part
Good: The host interviewed a lot of parents, administrators, and students, and brought in a historical perspective. Challenge: her view of race was pretty simplistic, and she seems to think race and class are the same, which they are not. Lots of heavy handed conclusions without much evidence. I enjoyed it, but it’s not particularly nuanced.
Still resonating, years later
The first time I listened to this series, it was interesting and very well reported, but more theoretical as my kids weren’t yet in full time school. A few years later, and my kids are in a multi-racial/ethnic school in a gentrifying neighborhood, and I’m listening again and watching things happen at school and this series is just resonating on an even deeper level. Powerful work.
What a roller coaster! Two things I’m walking away with are: asking non-white parents what THEY want and INTEGRATION is key, not diversity