In Episode 11, Alcine and Shane get real with their dear friend and collaborator Joe Truss. Joe talks about what it was like growing up in San Francisco’s Tenderloin district in the 80’s and wondering, “Why am I finding success while my friends are not?” This experience eventually led him into the classroom where Joe illuminates the gap between the teacher he thought he was going to be versus the teacher he was in real life. Through student voice and feedback, he shifted many of his mindsets and practices, cultivating a way of being that he brought into his 6-year principalship in southeast San Francisco. Joe helps us unpack the difference between bringing a vision and co-constructing a vision with staff, the need to slow it all down, and the nefarious trap of power-hoarding that he continues to see in his work across North America. We conclude with the power of racial affinity as a space for differentiation learning and a vehicle for healing, leveraging our differences as our strengths, and understanding the need to co-conspire around shared goals.
For Further Learning:
- Visit Joe’s website https://trussleadership.com/ to learn about his services and read his many publications.
- Read Leading a District Antiracism Journey in the March 2023 issue of Educational Leadership magazine by Shane, Joe and Julie Kempkey
- Racial Affinity Groups Aren’t Racist – They are the Secret Sauce in Antiracist Schools by Joe Truss and Jenn Berkowitz
- What Happened When My School Started to Dismantle White Supremacy Culture by Joe Truss
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