Initiatives undertaken by the Centre for Urban Schooling.
BIPOC Future Teachers @ OISE (BIPOCFT@OISE)
BIPOC Future Teachers (BIPOCFT@OISE) (formerly Educators of Colour in Conversation) is a space for Master of Teaching (MT) candidates, future K-12 teachers, who identify as Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour (BIPOC) to gather, learn, and uplift one another as they navigate the MT Program and prepare to teach in K-12 schools and beyond.
BIPOCFT@OISE recognizes BIPOC communities are oppressed by White supremacy; White supremacy interlocks with anti-Indigenous racism and anti-Black racism, and deeply affects Indigenous communities and Black communities in ways settlers from communities of Colour may not experience; and BIPOC communities experience racism differently. Most BIPOC MT candidates are preparing to work in K-12 schools in the Greater Toronto Area, where BIPOC teachers and administrators remain minoritized. The majority of children and youth in K-12 schools are now from BIPOC communities, and all children and youth need BIPOC teachers in their classrooms and schools.
BIPOCFT@OISE is facilitated, private, and confidential.
Queer/Trans @ OISE
Queer/Trans @ OISE (QT@OISE) is a place for 2SLGBTQIA+ teacher candidates and allies in the Master of Teaching (MT) program! We host weekly informal gatherings from September to April (except when students are on practicum).
We recognize that gender and sexual identities are understood through diverse lenses, including different personal, political, and cultural contexts. The ways that gender and sexual diversity work is done in mainstream culture often centers white thin able-bodied settlers, further marginalizing Indigenous/Two-Spirit, Black, Brown, and Asian queer and trans folx. It can also overlook the ways that ableism, saneism, classism, sexism, and fat-phobia intersect with many queer and trans people's lived experiences. Gender and sexuality do not exist in a vacuum from other marginalized identities. This is a space that Black, Brown, Indigenous, Asian, fat, neurodiverse, autistic, disabled, chronically ill, anxious, depressed, mentally ill people are welcome and will be centered. We are a support space and value care, reciprocity, and community-building.
Toronto Writing Project
The Toronto Writing Project (TWP) is based on the model of the National Writing Project, the largest research and professional development network by and for teachers in North America, which uses practitioner research as a vehicle for grassroots change efforts in classrooms, schools, and communities. Funded by the Ruth and Alexander Dworkin Tolerance fund, TWP supports activist educators to address equity issues in their classrooms through writing and research by conducting inquiries into their own classroom practices and share knowledge with peers who may face related issues teaching diverse students in urban schools. Composed of teachers, activists, and researchers who view writing as a mechanism for addressing equity issues across subject matter, across core subjects, TWP encourages formal and informal research opportunities for youth and teachers working individually and collaboratively to address equity issues in their classrooms, schools, and communities.