September 2023


Tennessee legislative panel will look into rejecting federal education funds, Chalkbeat Tennessee (also featured in 2 other outlets), 09/25/23 

Tennessee already ranks in the bottom fourth of states in spending per pupil, and eliminating a key funding source would have serious consequences, said Gini Pupo-Walker, executive director of The Education Trust in Tennessee. “We would not only redirect Tennesseans’ federal tax dollars to other states in the country, but we would have to dip into our rainy day fund in order to maintain our current level of education funding, limiting our capacity to invest in our students in the future, particularly those most in need,” Pupo-Walker said. 

Researchers Find Need for More High Quality, Culturally Relevant Curriculum, Ed Week, 09/25/23 

Students can grapple with complexity in an age-appropriate way, with the right teaching and support, Reed Marshall added. “We have to help students understand that they sit in a larger body in a larger community of actors. And you can say very simply, there are individual ways in which pollution can be addressed, as well as larger waves,” she said. “You can help students understand that, yes, as an individual, I have a responsibility. But there are other organizations who are equally as responsible; there is no binary.” 

More DMV school districts bringing back or adding police to security staff as threats increase, FOX5DC, 09/25/23 

As a number of threats have already caused concern in many districts early on in the school year, there have been debates over hiring additional school resource officers or bringing police in to secure campuses. Nancy Duchesneau with The Education Trust joins the DMV Zone to discuss what’s happening in our schools. 

Book bans and racial conversations, FOX5 DC (also featured in Daily Telegraph, 09/21/23 

A new report by the Education Trust says the rising number of book bans in America’s libraries and schools may have a negative impact on racial representation. Dr. Tanji Reed Marshall, co-author of the study, joins Jim on “The Final 5” to explain 

White authors, characters overrepresented in English language arts curricula, K12 Dive, 09/20/23 

“Despite an extremely narrow representation of people of color, the nation is witnessing a well-funded political strategy to erase the very few books schools have to prepare students to compete in a global economy by learning about people of different races and ethnicities,” said Tanji Marshall, co-author of the report and former director of P-12 practice at EdTrust, in a statement.  

Report Finds Diverse Characters in Schoolbooks Often One-Dimensional, Diverse Issues in Higher Education, 09/19/23 

Marshall said that the bans create a challenge. “Any censorship of any kind is bad,” she said. She was careful to note that that includes the types of shallow depictions of characters of color that her report critiques. “What is required is a more critical eye, a deeper understanding, so that students can push back against the portrayal of certain groups in texts,” she said. “That’s a much better work than simply removing texts.” 

Higher Education

Crushing Student Debt: Repayment of Student Loans Hurts Black Borrowers More, GrioTV, 09/25/23 

Brittani Williams appeared on Marc Lamont Hill’s show on GrioTV, talking about policies needed to advance Black student debt relief and spoke on the repayment options for borrowers as the payment pause ends. You can watch her interview using these links:  

Anti-affirmative action group, emboldened by US Supreme Court, targets scholarships, Reuters (also featured in 30 other outlets), 09/22/23 

“A student missing $1,000 or having a gap of $800 could mean the difference between being able to graduate or not,” said Ameshia Cross, director of communications for the Education Trust, whose website says it works to “dismantle the racial and economic barriers embedded in the American education system.” 

How to Increase Socioeconomic Diversity at the Ivies, Inside Higher Ed, 09/19/23 

Wil Del Pilar, senior vice president at the Education Trust, a research and advocacy group that focuses on “dismantling racial and economic barriers” in education, described the report as a “good push” for something that is “not a heavy lift.”