My students reflect the cultural richness of New York City - and they speak approximately 34 different languages among them!
Our school is an academically rigorous, tuition-free high school and college associate's degree program.
Many of my students are the first in their families to attend college. They are very eager for the opportunity to earn two years of free college tuition at the time of their high school graduation.
It is incredibly rewarding to work with such curious, eager, and motivated students as their virtual Library Director, Creative Writing Teacher and Speaker Series Coordinator.
My school's Sexuality and Gender Alliance (SAGA) has met weekly during the pandemic (as distance learning students), building community, awareness, support and visibility. When they asked for my help bringing an inspiring guest speaker to their group via Zoom, a virtual videoconferencing platform, I was happy to oblige as a supporting faculty member who regularly works with SAGA. Students chose Adam Eli as a Zoom speaker.
Eli is the founder of Voices 4, a non-violent direct-action activist group that advances LGBTQ+ rights.
Eli has recently published THE NEW QUEER CONSCIENCE with Penguin Books. Students in SAGA would love to read this book and discuss it with the author. It would be a dream come true to have this prominent, visionary leader visit our group.
In his book, Eli writes about growing up in an Orthodox Jewish community where being gay wasn't discussed, and where he lacked role models. He describes his vision for queer people to find unity and acceptance through knowing and celebrating our history. He also writes about "radical kindness" and the amazing power of empathy.
Eli's words are so inspiring -- and will be so appreciated by the students! He helps reduce the sense of isolation and fear that comes from lack of community and shame. As Eli writes, "Queer people have made important contributions to the world, and being queer means that you are a link in a long chain of people who have accomplished extraordinary things in the face of tremendous peril. You may not be able to feel it yet, but the spirit of queer resilience and survival lives in you."
This virtual guest speaker will help my students tap into this profound resilience. Thank you so much for reading this proposal. We're proud to have this opportunity to support LGBTQ students.
If you donated to this project, you can sign in to leave a comment for Ms. Jess Hinds.
DonorsChoose is the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.
As a teacher-founded nonprofit, we're trusted by thousands of teachers and supporters across the country. This classroom request for funding was created by Ms. Jess Hinds and reviewed by the DonorsChoose team.
DonorsChoose makes it easy for anyone to help a classroom in need. Public school teachers from every corner of America create classroom project requests, and you can give any amount to the project that inspires you.