Blink Consulting
Current Workshops
Past Workshops

Past workshops:

The Class Conference Workshops
  • Can we talk about class? Foundations for vital conversations about socioeconomic status and class
  • Socio-economic diversity: Affirming purpose, removing barriers, assuring inclusion
  • Socioeconomic class affinity groups: Why, what, how
  • Accountability for socioeconomic equity and inclusion: How do you know how you're doing? Assessing experiences and outcomes
  • Shared understandings and lexicon to have growthful conversations about SES and class that advance equity and inclusion in our learning communities
  • Practical "try tomorrow" (Pollock, 2008) tools and strategies for enacting the intentions of equity and inclusion in impactful everyday practice
  • A framework for institutional accountability for growing as SE and class-inclusive communities where all-not just some-students, employees and families can thrive

Critically rethinking affinity

To affinitize, or not to affinitize? Maybe your school is wondering about whether-and how-to offer affinity groups for students and/or adults. Or maybe your school is wondering what to do about affinity programs that are struggling to maintain membership and relevance. This working conversation is an opportunity to critically rethink affinity for individual, community and institutional growth. We'll start with clarifying what affinity groups are (and can be); reframe why they're vital in diverse learning communities; and explore how you can build, sustain and transform the culture and practice of affinity groups to advance equity and inclusion.

This workshop is for preK-adulthood educators (including administrators, faculty, staff, trustees and parents/guardians) and high/upper school student affinity group leaders, who are interested in starting or already advising/ leading affinity programs for students and/or adults in your communities.

  • Helpful language to articulate the "what" and "why" for affinity groups
  • "Try tomorrow" tools, frameworks and strategies (Pollock, 2008) for introducing, sustaining and re-envisioning affinity in your community
  • Effective practices from peer schools beginning, continuing and advancing their affinity work
Diversity 101 for Trustees: Foundations and Effective Practices for Governance

Facilitating Inclusive Conversations for Social Justice

Diversity for Heads and Trustees: Advancing Equity and Inclusion Systemically and Strategically
Saturday, November 11, 2017 at Town School for Boys in San Francisco, CA

Measuring inclusion: Assessment and accountability for advancement

#talking-notjusttweeting-aboutpolitics: having real conversations with kids

Diversity for Heads and Trustees: A Working Conversation about Governance

To affinity... and beyond! Affinity programs for inclusive communities

[Conference Session] Trustees and Heads Working for Diversity, Inclusion and Equity

Gender inclusion: policy and practice for everyone

[Conference Session] Beyond Nice: A Systems Approach to Equity
Saturday, December 5, 2015, Workshop Session D (8:30am-10:00am) at the People of Color Conference

Diversity for Trustees: Foundation and Best Practices for Governance
Saturday, November 7, 2015; 8:30am-12:30pm at Burke's School, 7070 California St., San Francisco, CA

[Conference Session] Facilitating Inclusive Conversations About Diversity and Social Justice
Friday, October 9, 2015, Workshop Session A (10:00am-11:00am) at the Northwest Association of Independent Schools Fall Educators Conference

[Conference Session] Talking About Socioeconomic Status and Class
Friday, October 9, 2015, Workshop Session A (1:15pm-2:15pm) at the Northwest Association of Independent Schools Fall Educators Conference

Facilitating Inclusive Conversations About Diversity and Social Justice

Talking About Socioeconomic Status and Class

This workshop is an occasion to lean into the challenges, opportunities and responsibility to educate students and adults about socioeconomic status (SES) and class identities, cultures, diversity and inclusion. We'll consider how our own identities position us in conversations about socioeconomics and class, as we explore everyday SES and class dynamics and challenges in our communities. Participants will identify helpful strategies, tools and language to have intentional and growthful conversations with diverse students, colleagues and families.

This workshop is for preK-adulthood staff, administrators, faculty, trustees and parents/guardians who recognize their opportunity and responsibility to help students, families and colleagues across the socioeconomic spectrum to thrive in their communities.

  • Working definitions of "socioeconomics," "class," "privilege" and other key concepts
  • Current research on children's developing awareness and normative attitudes about socioeconomic and class identities and diversity
  • Tools, strategies and guiding questions for socioeconomic and class inclusion and equity

Leaders of Color Professional Learning Community

This program is an opportunity for educators of color to explore their leadership visions, opportunities, and aspirations within and beyond independent schools. For experienced, emerging and questioning leaders of color at all stages of their careers, this yearlong series will offer participants time and support to:
  • Clarify their visions and goals as educators,
  • Identify core leadership competencies and challenges,
  • Design their own professional growth plans, and
  • Network and build vital personal and professional relationships.
With the intention of knowing and sustaining ourselves in our careers, we will lean into case studies; reflect on our own experiences; talk frankly about the challenges, opportunities and expectations for leaders of color; recognize our personal growth edges; and drill down on the skills and knowledge we have and need to thrive on our diverse professional paths.

For educators of color who want to be effective, transformative, and ever-growing in their profession, these working conversations will include all aspects of who we are as leaders and the complexity of the communities in which we work.

Co-facilitated with Steve Morris, Head of the San Francisco School

Leadership: A Personal and Professional Exploration for Educators of Color

A professional growth opportunity through the Bay Area Teacher Development Collaborative with colleague Steve Morris, head of The San Francisco School.

"I" is for injustice: Talking to kids about -isms and inequality

In order to teach about social justice, you have to talk about injustice. How do you help children have safe, inclusive and growthful conversations about -isms and inequality?
  • How do you explain injustice in a way that's honest, helpful and developmentally supportive?
  • What's too much too soon, and what's necessary to name now?
  • What do you do when the conversation becomes unsafe for a student?
  • How do you respond when a student shares an opinion that you personally find offensive?
In this workshop, participants will explore the challenges of facilitating conversations about social justice for the mutual safety and inclusion of diverse students and themselves. Participants will use scenarios and their own experiences to identify effective tools and strategies to facilitate for inclusion and equity, not just as content or concept, but as an experience and process for groups.

This workshop is for preK-8 staff, administrators, faculty, trustees and parents/guardians who are interested in, or are already, facilitating conversations about social justice with children.

  • Practical "try tomorrow" (Pollock, 2008) tools and strategies for facilitating safe, inclusive and growthful conversations
  • Frameworks for understanding social identity development and group dynamics
  • Guiding principles for having planned or unplanned challenging conversations
Equity = Action

Equity: How a community discerns and enacts fair treatment, opportunity and access to resources for diverse community members.

Action: What we do, even when we don't think we're doing anything.

Because nice is not enough (Nieto, 2009), we can't just intend equity, we have to do it. And how we strive for equity matters as much as what we do. Designed to empower educators with the understandings, skills and tools to align the intention and impact of their commitments to equity, this workshop is a focused inquiry opportunity for you to connect, reflect and work with others to help diverse children and youth to thrive as learners and leaders in and beyond schools.

This workshop is for: teachers, school staff and administrators, mentors, advisors, parents/guardians, coaches, community organizers, and board members of schools and community organizations who work with or for preK-college students.

In Service of Social Justice

Designed to empower schools with the knowledge, skills and tools to align the intention and impact of their service and community engagement projects, this workshop explores how these initiatives and experiences do-and don't-serve social justice. Using case studies like KONY2012, Haitian relief efforts and participants' own service and community engagement projects, participants will:
  • Recognize how their own identities and cultures impact their perspectives on and participation in service;
  • Think critically about how unintended prejudice and discrimination shape experience and outcomes in even the most well-intended service projects;
  • Explore charity, service and reciprocal partnership models for social action
  • Use a media literacy lens to reflect on implicit attitudes, assumptions and messages in service initiatives; and
  • Discern their options for action, beyond doing nothing or doing something that perpetuates systemic injustice (even while serving an immediate need)
This workshop is for preK-12 adult activists and upper school (9-12) students (*who attend with an adult from their school) who participate in and lead service learning, community engagement and social justice efforts.

  • Language and strategies for designing and leading service and community projects that serve social justice
  • Frameworks for exploring service and community engagement dynamics, opportunities and responsibilities
  • Practical "try tomorrow" (Pollock, 2008) tools and strategies for collaborating with diverse students, colleagues and community partners in reciprocal learning and growth experiences
  • Guiding questions and lenses for assessing the inclusion and equity of service and community engagement work
You belong here: Helping students of color and students receiving financial assistance to thrive in independent schools

As a group, how are students of color doing at your school? And how is your school doing in its efforts to include students receiving financial assistance and their families in community life and school leadership? In this workshop, participants will explore common issues and experiences of lower income and racial minority students and families in independent schools. We will identify opportunities, responsibilities and effective practices to create environments where all youth and their families can thrive.

This workshop is for middle and upper school (6-12) faculty, administrators, staff, trustees and parents/guardians who are committed to making their schools places where students and families of color and students and families receiving financial assistance thrive.

Co-facilitated with Nonoko Sato, Executive Director of SMART.

  • Language for talking about inclusion and equity with students, families and colleagues
  • Frameworks for understanding institutional and community opportunities and responsibilities for inclusion and equity
  • Practical "try tomorrow" (Pollock, 2008) tools and strategies to engage students and families
  • Guiding questions and lenses for assessing inclusion

When to Say What: Talking to Children about Identity, Diversity, and Inclusion with BATDC

Talking Back to White Entitlement at the White Privilege Conference

Teaching Immigration
Teaching about immigration is necessarily teaching about identity, diversity and social justice. Learning about immigration can be a personally transformative, socially engaging experience that empowers students of diverse identities to learn about themselves and the world. How do we help students to engage this complex subject and each other with intellect and compassion? In this workshop, educators will explore issues, opportunities and responsibilities in teaching children about immigration. We will consider content and pedagogy as we identify developmentally supportive language, frameworks and strategies for teaching and learning about immigration in diverse groups. This workshop is for preK-12 staff, administrators, faculty and parents who teach or have conversations about immigration with children.

Intended outcomes:
  • Identification of normative issues and opportunities in teaching about immigration
  • Language, tools and skills for teaching students about immigration
  • Guiding questions and strategies for helping students to think critically and compassionately about immigration
Say What? Standing up to Injustice
This workshop begins with the premise that while we may be surprised by an unjust action or attitude, we can also be prepared. Whether we're confronted by a complaint about students "getting special accommodations" or the persistently casual use of homophobic slurs, we can stand up. Participants are invited to bring their own "say what?" scenarios for discussion. Since social justice is a process that requires sustained and mutual individual, community and institutional commitment, we will:
  • focus on what individuals can do to stand up to every day injustice, applying the principles of right speech and right action to discern how to respond, whether you have 10 seconds in the hall with someone or a whole afternoon with your class;
  • explore when and how community education can responsively and proactively support both individual and institutional growth; and
  • identify needs, opportunities and tools to clarify institutional expectations and systematize the practices of inclusion and equity across all areas of school life.
This workshop is for preK-12 staff, administrators, faculty and parents who are interested in taking action against everyday injustice.

Intended outcomes:
  • Practical understanding of everyday social justice
  • Language, tools and skills to act for social justice
  • Rubric for identifying actionable individual, community and institutional response and proaction
Facilitating Conversations about Diversity
According to facilitation guru Sam Kaner, "The facilitator's job is to support everyone to do their best thinking and practice." This workshop will help participants build a foundation for authentic engagement in conversations about identity, diversity and social justice. Participants will consider the role of the facilitator, and identify best practices for creating safe, professional spaces for important, and sometimes challenging, conversations. We will use somatic techniques for getting centered and staying grounded when the unexpected happens (as it always does), and share proactive and responsive strategies, activities and tips for cultivating collaborative thinking and practice. This workshop is for staff, administrators, faculty and parents who are interested in, or are already, facilitating diversity work in their communities (from preK-adulthood).

Navigating Your Role in Transforming Your School
Workshop participants will explore and share strategies to engage school leaders and potential allies in examining and re-imagining equity within schools. We will share vital information that will strengthen and expand our communication and support for one another.

Multiculturalism as Core Practice: Creating Rubrics for Educators
Multiculturalism is a core value for 21st century schools. What does that value look like as systemic practice? Sacred Heart Schools, Atherton is in its third year of creating and piloting a rubric that guides all of its staff, faculty and administrators in understanding and enhancing how to enact multiculturalism as a SHS educator. This discussion will overview that process, and pose essential questions and considerations for schools interested in developing and integrating professional rubrics to clarify values, intentions and expectations for the practice of inclusion and equity in their schools.

Teaching Whiteness
This workshop will focus on normative experiences of whiteness (the encounter with the Other, the experience of being called a racist, the denial of whiteness, the attempt to be an ally in the struggle for racial justice, the insistence on colorblindness) as pivotal opportunities to help individuals develop self-awareness and empowered racial identities. Participants will leave with an understanding of occasions and issues in white identity development, and frames and tools to help them to decide what to say and how to act to foster their own and/or their white allies' identities.

Practicing Antidiscrimination
As Sonia Nieto writes, even in the most well-intentioned school, "nice is not enough" to ensure inclusion and equity for all students and adults. This workshop will tap the knowledge and skills participants already bring to their work, in addition to current research on bias and discrimination, to identify proactive and responsive opportunities to address unconscious biases and subtle, yet stunning forms of discrimination within their communities. Participants will explore the process and effects of: covering, aversive discrimination, microaggressions and stereotype threat on minority and majority-identified students and adults. With the goal of creating actively antidiscriminatory campuses, this workshop will challenge a "difference-blind" approach, and offer a perspective that affirms the whole individual and empowers each person to be a stakeholder in school culture and life. This workshop is for staff, administrators, faculty and parents who want to deepen their anti-discriminatory practice (preK-adulthood).

Teaching Privilege
This workshop starts with the premise that we can empower children and adults to leverage their privilege for social good by helping them to reflect on their own identities and attitudes about privilege, and redefining privilege as an opportunity to enact equity and justice. We will explore race, class, sexuality and learning-ability privilege, and challenge the deficit ideology that disempowers people by dividing us into "haves" or "have-nots." Drawing on participants' experiences, as well as research on children's developing awareness and normative attitudes about privilege, we will explore strategies for transformatively teaching and learning about the p-word. This workshop is for staff, administrators, faculty and parents who are interested in exploring and working with privilege (from preK-adulthood).

Past Blink workshops include:
•   Affinity: An Introduction
•   Affinity, Identity & Youth: Effective Practices for Student Cultural Groups
•   Antiracism: What Do We Stand For?
•   An Introduction to Cultural Competency Standards
•   Bias Awareness & Action
•   Critically Rethinking Diversity in Independent Schools
•   Critically Rethinking Race
•   Defining Multicultural Education
•   Diversity: Beginning with Language
•   Diversity 911s: Transforming Urgency into Action
•   The Elephant Is the Room: Normative Culture, Awareness & Education
•   Exploring Gender with Students
•   Equity Pedagogy: Building Blocks
•   From Statement to Action: Living Equity & Inclusion
•   Multicultural Education & Struggling Students
•   Multicultural Education: What, Why… & How
•   Multicultural Education Vocabulary: Creating Transformative Definitions for the Classroom
•   Multicultural Leadership: How Student Groups Can Impact School Culture
•   Not Just An Elective Anymore: Redefining [Ethnic] Lit
•   Race Matters: Identity, Culture and Diversity
•   Seeing the Canvas: Exploring the Culture of Whiteness
•   Spellbound: One Nation, Many Americas
•   Student Organization/Student Union/Club: What’s in a Name, Anyway?
•   Students on the Margins
•   Supporting Students' Sexual Identity Development
•   Talking with Children About Race
•   Teaching Humanities, Teaching Culture: Redefining the Multicultural
•   What Are We Talking About? Having Intentional Conversations About Diversity
•   When To Say What: Talking to Primary and Middle Grade Students About Identity, Culture & Bias

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