August 19, 2020

Making Continued Moves Towards Anti-Racist Classroom Policies

Room: ESLC 053


During the past two years, I have recognized the importance of implementing Pedagogies of Care into my classroom. Students are going through a lot, and it is important for me as their instructor to develop a classroom that allows them many opportunities to be successful. In order to do so, I have learned about the importance of implementing more anti-racist policies. Not only have anti-racist policies helped me become a more caring instructor, but they have also helped me better assert my authority as an instructor of color in a classroom filled with students who have (most-likely) never had a Black female instructor before. During this time, I have learned that in order to be a more anti-racist and caring teacher, I needed to modify my attendance, grading, and late work policies. Originally, I felt strict policies garnered me respect I felt I had to take from students. I have found, however, that modifying these policies has increased student responsibility for learning and alleviated the stress I feel when "awarding" grades to students. I am also a more anti-racist, equitable, and caring instructor. These practices will continue to shape my classroom moving forward as I continue to implement, learn, and grow. My current pedagogical practices are the result of serious reflection, research, student surveys, and conversations with colleagues. This presentation will engage presenters in conversation and reflection about attendance, grading, and late work, and invite them to imagine making continued moves towards a more anti-racist classroom.

*Participants will reflect on the purpose of attendance, late work, and grading policies
*Participants will engage in conversations about anti-racist classroom policies surrounding attendance, late work, and grading
*Participants will imagine ways to make their classroom spaces more anti-racist and equitable
*Participants will view examples of alternative attendance, late work, and grading methods to help them as they evaluate their own practices and move towards more caring and anti-racist classroom policies

Lisa GabbertCree Taylor


In addition to working with her spouse to raise three young children, Cree Taylor is a Lecturer at Utah State University. Her classroom is informed by Social Constructivism, Critical Race Theory, Feminism, Black Feminist Thought, and Pedagogies of Care. She works to employ an Engaged Pedagogy and to establish her classroom as a brave space where students feel empowered to share their own perspectives and have those perspectives challenged in respectful and meaningful ways. Ms. Taylor loves mentoring students and has a special interest in working with BIPOC students here at USU. She recognizes the mental and emotional toll of navigating Predominantly White Institutions as a member of a traditionally marginalized community and she hopes students will feel comfortable reaching out to her for support. Her favorite part about working with students is engaging with them on controversial topics and texts. Students are so smart and well-informed and they are full of brilliant ideas. She loves hearing student perspectives and ideas during classroom dialogues and discussions and reading about what they are learning in their writing. She also enjoys witnessing student progress in writing and research from the beginning to the end of the term. Ms. Taylor teaches First Year Composition (ENGL 1010 and ENGL 2010) and Intro to Ethnic Studies (ENGL 2640).