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Dedicated to Teachers

Registration is OPEN for #IREL22



Registration is now OPEN!

Did you get to see our June 9, 2022 Facebook Live Event with IREL cofounders Dr. Sonja Cherry-Paul and Tricia Ebarvia, moderated by Donalyn Miller? Check it out and be inspired to join the work at these institutes this summer.

Check out the video!


Registration for #IREL22

As part of Heinemann’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, these institutes are being offered at cost, with all proceeds going directly to compensate facilitators and speakers. 

Institute 1: July 11-15, 2022
*$259 per person
Interrogating Internalized Racism in Ourselves and in Our Practice
Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library, Washington, D.C.

Learn more about Institute #1


Institute 2: August 1-5, 2022
$159 per person
Understanding Systemic Racism: Society, Schools, and Classrooms
Learn more about Institute #2 (Virtual)

*Additional funding for the in-person institute is made possible by the DC Public Library Foundation. Typical pricing for in-person institutes such as this run upwards of $1000.

*Institute 1 will be IN PERSON in Washington, D.C. and would not be possible without the generous support of the DC Public Library Foundation. Please note Institute 1 is limited to 100 attendees. Session 2 will be virtual. If you are interested in giving or receiving a scholarship, email workshops@heinemann.com.


What is IREL?

In the summer of 2019, more than seventy educators gathered from across the country and globe in the small New England town of Durham, New Hampshire. What brought them together was their deep commitment to justice and their understanding that literacy is an important and necessary tool for liberation. 

Thus began the inaugural Institute for Racial Equity in Literacy (IREL). 

Originally scheduled to be in person for the summer of 2020, IREL became an online experience where educators gathered for two, one-week virtual institutes. The summer of 2021 then provided the chance for new attendees to join returning participants and continue this work. Over 745 educators have participated in IREL since 2019. During the 2020 and 2021 institutes, participants who attended both sessions totaled 140 and 131, respectively!

The anticipation of what these two institutes will bring us in 2022 is energizing. Through IREL, Dr. Sonja Cherry-Paul and Tricia Ebarvia have designed a space where educators can take the necessary time to reflect deeply on their practices and work for transformative change in their classrooms, schools, and communities. 



IREL is intended to be as accessible in cost as possible through partnerships. Since 2020, Heinemann Professional Development has collaborated with Dr. Sonja Cherry-Paul and Tricia Ebarvia to host the institute and reach the goal of establishing tuition that cover institute costs.  This year, we are thrilled to announce that support for Institute 1 comes from the DC Public Library Foundation, without whom this in person institute would not be possible at this special rate.

DCPLF_Logo_RGB__Full ColorFounded in 1985, DC Public Library Foundation is a 501c3 that enhances the DC Public Library system resources and programs to promote literacy, workforce readiness, and cultural engagement for all community members. The Foundation administers and manages a variety of restricted and unrestricted funds in the form of donations, bequests, trusts, foundation and government grant awards. DC Public Library Foundation is committed to providing all DC residents with the vital resources they expect while focusing on new programs that specifically address the inequities in learning and access that currently face our community, and the Foundation is dedicating its efforts to help achieve these goals.


From the IREL ArchiveWhy people returned to IREL21Read a Q&A from IREL21

On the Podcast: IREL20



Sonja Cherry Paul Dr. Sonja Cherry-Paul’s research and work stem from an unyielding commitment to antibias and antiracist pedagogy and practices. She has taught middle school students for twenty years and develops curricula that centers the work of racial literacy in K–12 schools. Sonja co-founded the Race Matters Committee in her former school district.

Sonja is the Director of Diversity and Equity at the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project (TCRWP) and the host of The Black Creators Series, a collaboration with TCRWP and Candlewick Press. She is the co-founder of the Institute for Racial Equity in Literacy and the Senior Advisor of the Heinemann Fellows.

Sonja is the #1 New York Times best selling author of Stamped (For Kids) and she is the co-author of four books published by Heinemann: Teaching Interpretation: Using Text-Based Evidence to Construct Meaning (2014), Flip Your Writing Workshop: A Blended Learning Approach (2016), Breathing New Life into Book Clubs: A Practical Guide for Teachers (2019), and Critical Literacy: Unlocking Contemporary Fiction.


Tricia Ebarvia_ProfileA co-founder of #DisruptTexts, Tricia Ebarvia advocates for literacy instruction rooted in equity and liberation through critical literacy. An educator with 20 years of experience, she is currently the Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at an independent school in Philadelphia. Previously, she taught and served as department chairperson at a large public high school. Tricia serves on the advisory board for the West Chester Writing Project (NWP) as well as the Center for Antiracist Education (CARE). Tricia’s work has been featured in various publications, including NCTE’s English Journal and the New York Times. A 2016-2018 Heinemann Fellow, Tricia is the author of a forthcoming professional book on anti-bias literacy instruction. Follow her @triciaebarvia and at triciaebarvia.org.


Topics: Multi-day Institutes, Tricia Ebarvia, Sonja Cherry-Paul, IREL

Date Published: 04/21/22

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