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Topic: Erin Jones

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August 15, 2014 at 5:00 AM

Former teacher focused on equity mulls run for state superintendent

Despite the highly politicized climate around education, there was little such rhetoric at the first Teachers United conference on Thursday. That may surprise some — like the handful of protesters gathered outside — who view the three-year-old organization as little more than a union-busting wedge.

True, Teachers United has supported charter schools and opposed several aspects of tenure, particularly the “last in, first out” seniority-based hiring policies that are dear to labor. Yet inside the Transformative Teaching Conference at UW’s Alder Hall, educators representing nearly 30 Washington school districts were learning from one another about adolescent brain science and promising trends in education technology.

Erin Jones speaking at the Teachers United conference on Thursday. Photo courtesy Kristina McCormick/Teachers United.

Erin Jones speaking at the Teachers United conference on Thursday. Photo courtesy Kristina McCormick/Teachers United.

Keynote speaker Erin Jones, however, may be a politician-in-the-making. In her half-hour talk, Jones, 43, a former English and foreign language teacher, discussed her mission to change the way educators are trained, as well as the eye-opening experience of watching her own African-American children navigate public schools.

“I’m never going to college because college is for white people,” Jones’ 6-year-old daughter said one evening at the dinner table.

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Comments | More in News | Topics: Erin Jones, Randy Dorn, Teachers United