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Dedicated to Teachers

Reasons People are Attending #IREL21 This Summer


Are you wondering if you have the energy, bandwidth, or even need to attend #IREL21 this summer?

Isolation was already an issue for educators and this year certainly exacerbated the problem. We know the power of community and we all need it. Community rejuvenates. Community heals. Community gives you the energy to refresh, reflect, and refocus on how to contribute to inclusive education for all students in your school. As the pandemic made visible what many educators already knew, the work continues—and we need you. 

Upon registration for #IREL21, participants were sent a survey asking why they decided to return this year OR why they are signing up for the first time. Here is what we learned.

"I want to continue to learn and unlearn things. While two weeks of learning was a good start, I still have so much more work to do."

"Last year's institute was so powerful. I loved having the dedicated time on my calendar to read, listen to podcasts, write, be in conversation, and set up action plans. I want to do this again - to take stock of where I am on my journey and set new goals in the company of others. I want to make the time to listen, learn, get feedback, and be there for others too."

It was an amazing experience. It was so well-led and well-facilitated, and there were so many opportunities for conversation and collaboration.

One of our key priorities as a school, embedded in our school improvement plan, is understanding the impact of racism in our local school structures, and working to overcome the barriers that systemic racism erects in our practices. We've dug into identity and race this year, but now want to move our practices further.

Being a college graduate and traveling the globe, while teaching at international schools...I'm now more curious about how skewed my undergrad education may have been? I want to avoid making mistakes in the delivery of information as I move forward as an educator.

I’ve been thinking and reading about racial equity personally for a little while now, and I know I need to do better to bring it into my classroom. Also, I follow a lot of the presenters and facilitators on Twitter, and I really admire and respect their work. I’m eager to have a chance to hear from them more directly.

I feel this is an area I need to explore further to be a better educator, parent and community member.

What can I expect during the institute? 

This is not 9-5 on Zoom, we promise you! Each institute is a week full of interactive multimedia content and engagement. Throughout the week, participants will engage in a flexible combination of live and self-paced opportunities for participation, with session recordings and materials available for 60 days.

To learn more about these institutes, how it meets the needs of educators of color, how to help school leaders understand why they should attend, and to watch the recent livestream #IREL21 preview with Dr. Sonja Cherry-Paul and Tricia Ebarvia, follow the button below.

Learn more about IREL

Questions? Please contact workshops@heinemann.com.


Dr. Sonja Cherry-Paul's research and work stem from an unyielding commitment to anti-bias and antiracist pedagogy and practices in K-12 schools. She is an educator, a curriculum developer and author of several books for teachers, and she has adapted Stamped For Kids. Sonja is the Director of Diversity and Equity at the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project (TCRWP) at Columbia University, the host of The Black Creators Series, and the Senior Advisor of the Heinemann Fellows. Connect with her @SonjaCherryPaul and sonjacherrypaul.com.

Tricia Ebarvia is a co-founder of #DisruptTexts and an advocate for literacy instruction rooted in equity and liberation through critical literacy. An educator with 20 years of experience, she teaches and serves as department chairperson at Conestoga High School in Berwyn, PA. Tricia serves on the advisory board for the West Chester Writing Project (NWP) as well as the Center for Antiracist Education (CARE). Tricia recently accepted a position as the Director for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for the Green Street Friends community in Philadelphia, PA. A 2016-2018 Heinemann Fellow, Tricia is the author of a forthcoming professional book with Heinemann on anti-bias literacy instruction. Follow her @triciaebarvia and at triciaebarvia.org.

Topics: Equity, Multi-day Institutes, Tricia Ebarvia, Literacy, Social Justice, Sonja Cherry-Paul, Summer, Heinemann PD, IREL

Date Published: 06/09/21

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