Antiracist Algebra Coalition

“Not everything that is faced can be changed. But nothing can be changed until it is faced.”

james Baldwin
“An equitable, liberating system of education is possible.” Please sign up, and explore this site to learn more. I look forward to connecting with you.

Are you dedicated to racial justice for youth who identify as people of color in Syracuse, NY?

Are you a stakeholder in public education in Syracuse, NY 
(a parent, teacher, student, leader, public official, administrator, or community member)? 

…. If you answered yes, then your voice needs to be heard.

Antiracist Algebra Coalition

Purpose

The purpose of the Antiracist Algebra Coalition is to connect Syracuse community members and stakeholders in education to explore the intersection of antiracism and students’ success in algebra in the Syracuse City School District.

Why Antiracism in Algebra in SCSD?

Students in SCSD, predominately students of color, need to pass Algebra, and a high-stakes exam called the Algebra Regents, in order to graduate high school. Otherwise, Algebra serves as a gatekeeper for students’ success. 

Algebra is a gatekeeper to graduation – if you don’t pass algebra, and don’t pass the Algebra Regents in New York State, you won’t graduate high school. If you don’t graduate high school, it will be much more difficult to get a job along a meaningful college and career pathway.

Most students (54%, or 1,400 students) did not pass the algebra regents in 2017. Indeed, while there are more than twice as many Black students than white students in SCSD, white students are passing the algebra regents at higher rates than Black students.

We believe this disproportionality in who passes algebra in SCSD is an indicator of racist policy and practice.

Who graduates high school? If 2 out of 10 high schoolers are white, and 2 out of 6 high schoolers graduate, this is disproportional.

Guiding Questions

  1. How are the practices and policies governing school algebra in Syracuse “gatekeeping” Black students’ success?
  2. What actions need to be taken to dismantle racist policies and practices governing school Algebra in Syracuse?
The work of antiracism in algebra involves identifying and dismantling policies and practices that perpetuate inequities in black and brown students’ opportunities to learn math (algebra) in meaningful ways.

Education and Advocacy Aims

  1. Educate ourselves — what actions need to be taken to dismantle racist policies and practices governing school algebra in Syracuse
  2. Educate others — build relationships and engage in dialogue with thought leaders and community members to identify problems and solutions
  3. Advocate for Change — persuade decision makers to examine and dismantle racist policies and practices that shape students’ experiences in school algebra

The Work of Antiracism

The work of antiracism is an active process of interrogating and dismantling processes and policies that contribute to inequitable opportunities for racial groups along a hierarchy. This includes individual, interpersonal, and structural forms of racism.

An Invitation for “Cogen” Leaders

We are recruiting a racially diverse group of youth, teachers, researchers, administrators, parents, and community members dedicated to racial justice in Syracuse, NY to co-lead this effort. Cogen leaders will co-construct and co-lead a working and learning group focused on racial justice in algebra education in SCSD.

Curious? Want to learn more? Sign up for our email updates!

You can learn more about the project by viewing an overview slide show here.

Contact

Please reach out to Nicole L. Fonger nfonger@syr.edu to learn more about the project. Nicole is a dedicated SCSD parent, Syracuse community member, artist, writer, and math education professor at Syracuse University.

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