The Integrated Schools Podcast

Hosts, Andrew, a White dad from Denver, and, Val, a Black mom from North Carolina, dig into topics about race, parenting, and school segregation. With a variety of guests ranging from parents to experts, these conversation strive to live in the nuance of a complicated topic.

Kids & Family
Parenting to Create the World We Want
Jon Tobin, and his wife Amanda, strive to continually finds ways to make decisions that reflect their values, that support their kids, and that work to make the world just a bit more just, everyday.  With a deep belief in the power of community, in the need to be rooted in place, and the need to invest their resources, time and energy into their community, they support their local, public school by sending their kids, showing up humbly, and doing the sometimes slow work to build community.
52 min
The Importance of Belonging
There's a difference between feeling like you belong in a space and that that space belongs to you.  Dr. Shanette Porter has studied schools that have created that sense of belonging, and found that not only are strictly academic measures improved (test scores, etc), but other benefits come as well.  From increased graduation rates, to decreased disciplinary incidents, to increased attendance, schools that focus on creating a sense of belonging do better for the whole child.  Dr. Porter joins us to share some of her findings, as well as a powerful definition of belonging.  
48 min
A Conversation with the Assistant Secretary of ...
Assistant Secretary of Education, Roberto Rodriguez, joins us to discuss the Fostering Diverse Schools grants recently awarded, and the federal government's role in advocating for integration.
38 min
2023 In Review
To close out the year, we share listener voice memos, an update on Integrated Schools, including our new board of directors, and tease a few of the episodes coming in the new year!
30 min
ICYMI: Teaching Hard History
Is a child ever too young to learn about race? We're sharing an episode from Learning for Justice's Teaching Hard History podcast today that answers that question with a resounding no. One of our summer interns, Jaden González, brought us the episode and joins to discuss it, along with his own racial identity development as a Puerto Rican growing up in New York City with a multiracial family.  
44 min
Taking Just Action for Integration with Richard...
Richard Rothstein's The Color of Law unveiled institutionalized racial segregation and its lingering impacts on our country. The ways that we are segregated today were caused by intentional governmental policies, and we have yet to redress the harm caused.  Richard's daughter Leah, joined him to write Just Action: How to Challenge Segregation Enacted Under the Color of Law. They both join us to talk about the books and role we all have to play in creating the true multiracial democracy we are striving for. 
67 min
Managing an Increasingly Diverse and Unequal Ed...
As our country becomes increasingly racially diverse and socioeconomically unequal, schools are often the first public institutions addressing those changes.  Dr. Erica Turner has studied how district level leaders have dealt with this, and wrote about it in her book, Suddenly Diverse, How School Districts Manage Race and Inequality.  She joins us to share some of what she found.
59 min
There Goes the Neighborhood with Jade Adia
Gentrification sucks . . . yet change is inevitable.  We're joined today by Young Adult author, Jade Adia, whose first novel, There Goes The Neighborhood takes place in a fictional neighborhood in South LA being wracked by gentrification.  We discuss Jade's personal story and how it led to her writing this novel, and we discuss ways of getting involved and finding connection in our neighborhoods.   
58 min
The Demands and Promises of Integration with Jo...
John Blake has been writing about race and religion as a reporter for over 25 years, and over those years he has come to discover that facts don't change people, relationships do.  His relationship with his mother and her sister, his father's relationships on the decks of a Merchant Marine ship, the multi-racial community he formed through church - these relationships across difference are what led to changes in racial attitudes for his relatives and for himself.  He chronicles it all in his memoir, More Than I Imagined: What a Black Man Discovered About the White Mother He Never Knew, and he joins us to talk about it.  
66 min
Season 10 Kick Off: Reconnecting
As we launch season 10, we are focusing on 4 themes: The importance of public schools, the power of storytelling, the importance of being in community, and stamina. We talk about why these themes feel important now, and update listeners on the start of the school year.
38 min
Reflections on Season 9
As Season 9 comes to a close, we reflect on some of the amazing conversations we had over the past 16 episodes, and hear from you about what you're grappling with.  
22 min
School Lunch: Justice On The Menu
With participation from 30 million students and annual spending over $19B, The School Lunch Program has the potential to be a massive lever for change. A world of quality food, with universal participation, less environmental impact, better jobs for food workers, and happier, healthier kids is possible. However, to get there, The School Lunch Program needs us all to participate.
62 min
The Intersections of Disability, Race, and Segr...
We often talk about school segregation from a racial and /or class perspective, but an equally concerning issue is the segregation of kids based on dis/ability.  And while many disabled students are marginalized by our educational system, it is particularly true for students of color.  It's an overdue conversation for us on the podcast, and it's an important one, because, as the conversation makes clear, all forms of oppression are linked together, and destroying one will require them all to fall.  
83 min
The Segregated Lives of Preschoolers
Preschool segregation profoundly impacts children and teachers. Dr. Casey Stockstill joins us to explore the importance of inclusive, diverse preschools, race and class dynamics for early learners, and the impacts segregation has on future learning environments.
63 min
School Safety: More Than One Dimension
School shootings are the most obvious manifestation of an un-safe school, and while they are tragic, they are rare compared to the daily harms our school structures can inflict on students. Dr. Meg Caven joins us to encourage a broader, more holistic view of school safety.
63 min
Show Up, Listen, Stay Put, Speak Up
Showing up in global majority schools and then listening and becoming part of the community are crucial first steps for integrating parents, but the time comes when you have to speak up. However, knowing what to speak up about can be tricky. Dr. Toutoule NToya and Becky Boll join us to grapple with the challenges of knowing when to advocate and what to advocate for, and the importance of building community in that work.
67 min
Between the Lines: An EPIC Comeback
Housing and school segregation are closely intertwined, yet the story of how that came to be is rarely taught. The students at EPIC Theatre Ensemble studied the issue and created a play to explore it. Their art serves both as an outlet for the shock they felt in learning this history, and also an invitation to deeper, more productive civic dialog about a topic that can often be fraught. We share a conversation about the piece as well as excerpts from the play.
63 min
Centering Civil Rights in the Fight for Education
For many, the words "civil rights" conjure images of the past, focusing on politician, lawyers, activists. However, our guests today, Drs. Linda and Kia Darling-Hammond, ask us to consider the civil rights implications we face today in the fight for a quality, 21st century education for all kids.
60 min
ICYMI: Teaching While White
We've been big fans of the Teaching While White podcast for a long time. While we're preparing episodes for the new year, we wanted to bring you a great conversation from their show with Drs. John Diamond and Amanda Lewis about their book, Despite the Best Intentions.
56 min
The 100th Episode!
We're celebrating 100 episodes! Over the past 4.5 years we've shared 100 conversations ranging from parent conversations to experts. Today, we reflect on what we've learned, we share clips from past episodes, and talk about what we hope for the future.
57 min
Language, Power, and Whiteness
Dr. JPB Gerald is back! In addition to arguing that what we prize in standard language aligns with a constructed White identity, he also makes the link between our concept of dis/ability, and the creation of the idea of Blackness that emerged from emancipation.
64 min
Cathryn and the Saviors
What happens when a group of well meaning, and well resourced, parents enter an under resourced school in order to "save" it? For Cathryn, a low-income parent, she felt like she was being robbed of the culture and history of her school community.
64 min
What's up with the suburbs?: Organizing, Buildi...
The mostly White vision of the suburbs baked into our popular conception doesn't match the reality of today. The impacts of this are being felt in elections around the country, and the implications for education, and particularly the possibility of integrated schools, is huge. Dr. Jasmine Clark was the first Black woman elected to a suburban district in Georgia. She joins us to discuss.
43 min
PTA So White with Dr. Brittany Murray
PTAs are often where kids are first exposed to civic engagement. They see caregivers organizing to advocate for resources and policies. And yet, there is a massive representation problem, leading to inequities. Dr. Brittany Murray joins us to discuss.
71 min
Finding Hope in Solidarity with Heather McGhee
Heather McGhee’s book, The Sum of Us, called attention to the idea of “solidarity dividends”, the gains that are made when people come together across race to fight for justice. She joins us to talk about her new podcast, also called The Sum of Us, which features a different story of cross racial solidarity in each episode.
60 min