For-profit

Teaching While White

Type:

For-profit DEI Consultancy

Founders:

Jenna Chandler-Ward and Elizabeth Denevi

Teaching While White is an education consulting company that promotes critical race theory-aligned “anti-racism” in the classroom and defines “white” as a “set of assumptions that is the baseline from which everything is judged.” [1] [2] It was founded by teachers Jenna Chandler-Ward and Elizabeth Denevi. [3]

Background

Teaching While White is an education consulting company whose stated goal is “to move the conversation forward on how to be consciously, intentionally, anti-racist in the classroom,” referring to the radical-left ideology espoused by Ibram X. Kendi and other theorists. [4]

The company, also known as TWW, expresses the view that more than 80 percent of teachers in the United States are white but “most don’t know that their whiteness matters.” [5] TWW claims that it is “committed to offering schools and universities a variety of opportunities for looking at how racial identity development impacts teaching and learning.” [6]

Teaching While White conducts workshops and presentations for professional development, partners with schools on development for educators. [7]

Teaching While White was founded by two white women, Jenna Chandler-Ward and Elizabeth Denevi. The organization’s website asserts, “Since racism was created by and for White people, it is our responsibility to dismantle it.” [8] [9]

Denevi and Chandler-Ward co-host the Teaching While White podcast. [10]

Philosophy

Teaching While White defines “white” as a “set of assumptions that is the baseline from which everything is judged; it is what passes for normal.” [11]

Through its programs, TWW says it seeks to answer questions such as “What are the best practices for making whiteness explicit in classrooms?,” “How does investigating whiteness impact the identity development of white students?,” “How does investigating whiteness in the classroom relieve or create stress for students of color?,” “How do teachers who do not understand their own racial impact cause stress for students?,” and “How do racially literate teachers ease the burden for students?” [12]

People

Leadership

Jenna Chandler-Ward is a co-founder of Teaching While White. She was previously a middle school English and drama teacher in the Boston area for more than 10 years. She was also a founder and co-director of the Multicultural Teaching Institute, which produces workshops and a conference for educators on issues of equity and inclusion. [13]

Elizabeth Denevi is a co-founder of Teaching While White. She is an adjunct professor at Lewis & Clark College in the Graduate School of Education and Counseling. She previously was the director of studies and professional development at Latin School of Chicago, where she was also a co-leader of the school’s accreditation team. At Georgetown Day School in Washington, D.C., she was the co-director of diversity and a senior administrator for 10 years. She has also taught in Virginia, California, and Colorado. [14]

Randolph Carter is the senior consultant to Teaching While White. He is the founder and associate director of the Eastern Educational Resource Collaborative. He is also a member of the Black Panther Party. He was previously at the National Association of Independent Schools. [15]

Board of Advisors

The Teaching While White board of advisors is made up of people of color to audit the company’s work and suggest improvements. [16]

Advisory board member Claudia A. Fox Tree is an educator and social justice activist. She leads seminars in “un-erasing” Native American-First Nations People. She lives in Massachusetts and says Native Americans have “been fighting white supremacy since 1492.” [17]

Advisory board member Daniel Harris is the founding director of The Equity Exchange and the director of diversity, equity, and inclusivity at John Burroughs School. He has been a trustee at Community School, a contributor to the Independent Schools of the Central States equity committee and the National Association of Independent Schools advisory think tank known as Call to Action. [18]

Advisory board member Kelly Hurst is a national organizer for Crossroads Antiracism Organizing and Training as well as the program coordinator for Springfield Coalition on Dismantling Racism. [19]

Advisory board member Liza Talusan has more than two decades of experience in elementary, secondary, and post-secondary education. [20]

Advisory board member Jorge Zeballos is an independent equity and inclusion consultant who has conducted workshops, on long-term equity initiatives at K-12 schools, colleges and universities, international and national conferences, and non-profit organizations. He has worked at Kellogg Community College in Battle Creek, Michigan. [21]

References

  1. “About Teaching While White.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about ^
  2. “Teaching While White.” Parents Defending Education. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://defendinged.org/report/teaching-while-white/ ^
  3. “About Teaching While White.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about ^
  4. “About Teaching While White.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about ^
  5. “About Teaching While White.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about ^
  6. “Teaching While White.” Parents Defending Education. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://defendinged.org/report/teaching-while-white/ ^
  7.  “Teaching While White.” Parents Defending Education. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://defendinged.org/report/teaching-while-white/ ^
  8. “About Teaching While White.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about ^
  9. “Resources.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/being-a-coconspirator ^
  10. “New Podcast ‘Teaching While White’ Cites SEED Influence.” National SEED Project. April 26, 2017. Accessed December 16, 2021. https://nationalseedproject.org/itemid-fix/entry/new-podcast-teaching-while-white-cites-seed-influence ^
  11. “Teaching While White.” Parents Defending Education. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://defendinged.org/report/teaching-while-white/ ^
  12. “About Teaching While White.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about ^
  13. “About Teaching While White.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about ^
  14. “About Teaching While White.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about ^
  15. “Our Team.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021.  https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/team ^
  16. “Advisory Board.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about/advisory-board ^
  17. “Advisory Board.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about/advisory-board ^
  18. “Advisory Board.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about/advisory-board ^
  19. “Advisory Board.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about/advisory-board ^
  20. “Advisory Board.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about/advisory-board ^
  21.  “Advisory Board.” Teaching While White. Accessed December 15, 2021. https://www.teachingwhilewhite.org/about/advisory-board ^
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