Kim Radersma, a former high school English teacher in California and Colorado, was the leader of a breakout session entitled “Stories from the Front Lines of Education: Confessions of a White, High School English Teacher.”
During the session, she told the teachers and administrators that “being a white person who does anti-racist work is like being an alcoholic.” She went on to say, “I will never be recovered by my alcoholism, to use the metaphor. I have to everyday [sic] wake up and acknowledge that I am so deeply imbedded with racist thoughts and notions and actions in my body that I have to choose everyday [sic] to do anti-racist work and think in an anti-racist way.”
Radersma, who is working toward her Ph. D. in critical whiteness studies at Brock University in Ontario, Canada, also trained the attendees to think that all education should be taught with a political agenda.
“If you don’t want to work for equity, get the fuck out of education,” she said. “If you are not serious about being an agent of change that helps stifle the oppressive systems, go find another job. Because you are a political figure.”