Working With Black Boys Why they are targeted for discipline Macheo Payne Lincoln Child Center August 2010
Introductions Where are you from?
Name, zodiac sign (optional) , talent
What can you offer to this topic?
In what capacity do you work with Black boys?
How do you work with Black boys?
Frame the context in which Black boys are served in various context.
Develop a shared understanding of what impacts our work with Black boys
Build critical questions that can inform our continued work with Black boys
Close your eyes, visualize a Black male student you have worked with that made an impact on you.
Think about why they impacted you, positively or negatively
Think about how you responded to this student
Talk about your student and share your reflections:
Who this student was
Why they impacted you
How you responded (what was the impact)
How Are They Targeted? The endangered species Suspension/ Expulsion Drop out Low graduation Special Ed/ ADHD Remedial/ Tracking Disease Illness Low quality of life Discrimination is psychological warfare Homicide Prison Environmental hazards Profiling Education Health Safety
Risk vs. Protective Factors
Environment (liquor store)
SES (income, class, social status)
Race (“old and black”)
Lack of nutrition
Broken family structure
Access to resources
Internal motivation, drive, determination, talent
Who Is The Oppressor? Oppression as the overt domination and exploitation of people, institutions and thought.
Everyone is an oppressor or sub-oppressor
If you passively or actively benefit from the oppression or exploitation of someone else, you are an oppressor
People (interpersonal oppression)
Act of bigotry
Institutions (institutional oppression)
Ways of thinking (ideological oppression)
White supremacy (white privilege)
Any thoughts of superiority over others
Overt domination and exploitation of people, resources, and thought
Secondary Oppressors or sub-oppressors
Black on black crime
Negative self image
Inability to name source of oppression
Inability to identify the existence of being oppressed
Acceptance of negative stereotypes and labels into self concept
Inability to actively resist oppression
What Oppression Looks Like How are Black boys targeted
Leverage power and authority
Threats of consequences
Deny they a ‘choice or a voice’
Forget they are children
Refuse to apologize
Treat them like adults
Fail to hold them accountable
Black boys are limited culturally, in what they can express and how they can express it
Care, concern, fear, hurt, sadness, shame, embarrassment,
Most of our students are acutely aware of their positioning in society.
Strength-Based "Men are whipped oftenist who are whipped easiest."
“ The strength of someone who has endured the greatest hardship is best equipped for creating great social change.”
Fredrick Douglass was born into slavery. A ‘foster’ child, dropped off at 6 by his grandmother who disappeared.
At 16, he fought back, struggling for 2 hours.
Douglass escaped slavery and rose to become an advisor to President Lincoln during civil war.
Strength-Based All behavior reflects a strength or a hidden strength
Name some of the hidden strengths that Black boys exhibit:
Flashy < Creative & expressive
Persistent < Resilient
Bold < Courageous
Outspoken < Honest & transparent
Moody < Passionate & compassionate
How Can You Improve If you’re already perfect, you can float up to Heaven, otherwise, roll up your sleeves
1. What do you do well with Black boys?
2. Where can you improve?
3. How can you strengthen your work with Black boys?
Internalized Impression How we oppression based on our impressions
Internalized impressions of Black males in the media and broader society do impact and contribute to your impression and assumptions about the Black boys you work with.
Write down as many Black men in the media, larger culture, world, that you can think of.
Internalized Impression Put a – or a + by each name and tally up the results.
You should not present yourself to students everyday unless you can do the following.
Imagine the following:
Your teacher being afraid of you and as a result unable to comfort you appropriately
Never feeling safe when you see the police even when they are there to “help”
Any enthusiasm that you express being interpreted as aggressive or even violent
Passion or excitement that you express being cast as sexually deviant
People not getting on the elevator with you or getting off as soon as you get on
People treat you as if you are going to steal something
Not being allowed to be angry without being viewed as dangerous