Dear MSAN Colleagues,

In this January 2019 MSAN Minute, we preview our upcoming webinar on eliminating discipline disparities, forward information on the upcoming National Black Lives Matter Week of Action in Our Schools, share resources from our friends at Teaching Tolerance on thinking well about cultural holidays in December and all year-round, announce our new MSAN student leadership planning group, and more.

Also--thank you for your responses to our survey on the MSAN minute. The feedback indicates that readers love the updated format. And congratulations to MSAN Minute reader Samantha Baruah, Associate Director of the UW Madison Teacher Education Center, who won the survey drawing!

Last but not least, it's our birthday! MSAN turns 20 this year. Watch the MSAN Minute for details on how we'll be celebrating all year long. We'll begin by sharing our new MSAN Google Calendar. Click here for information on how to add the MSAN Google calendar to your electronic calendar view. And be sure to keep sharing our MSAN Professional Learning Calendar document at, which stays synced with dates from the Google Calendar and which contains up-to-date notes on next year's dates as they are set.

Here's to 2019, MSAN colleagues. We appreciate you!

MSAN Institute


Submit your proposal for a breakout session at the MSAN Institute!
The Call for Proposals for MSAN Institute breakout sessions is now open! 75-minute MSAN Institute breakout sessions are presented by teachers, principals, and other school and district leaders, as well as by researchers and community partners.

Please share this Institute save-the-date flyer far and wide, and please consider presenting your work at this year's conference, either on your own or with a team!

Equity in Action


Equity Resources for Holidays in Schools: in December and Year-Round
Many schools and districts attempt to celebrate a non-religious "holiday season" but clearly favor Christmas in their traditions and decor. Moreover, important non-Christian holidays that don't occur in December are often overlooked completely.

These resources from our friends at Teaching Tolerance can help your school community to think better about cultural holidays all year-round. Includes early childhood resources, a protocol for analyzing school calendars for equity, and links to a webinar and lesson plans on "The December Dilemma."

Black Lives Matter at School


National Black Lives Matter Week of Action in Our Schools
Black Lives Matter At School is a national committee of educators organizing for racial justice in education. Over the past few years, the group has encouraged educators, parents, students, unions, and community organizations across the country to join in an annual week of action during the first week of February. This year's event will be held February 4-8th, 2019, and will reach communities large and small. There are many ways to participate, as individuals and with groups. Check out the Black Lives Matter Week of Action in Schools Starter Kit, see these discussion questions for PD gatherings from Building Anti-Racist White Educators, and click here for an example of how a local NEA affiliate teacher's union--Madison Teachers, Inc.--is partnering with MSAN member district and site of our MSAN 2019 site visit, Madison Metropolitan School District, on their community's week of action.

MSAN Focus Areas


Dr. Anne Gregory of Rutgers University will be conducting an MSAN webinar on a framework of 10 research-based policies and practices that show promise in reducing discipline disparities. The webinar will take place on January 17, 2019 at 4 PM Central Standard Time. Advance RSVP not required; simply create a username and log in under "Conference Entry" at on January 17 at 4 PM CST to participate.

Join us to learn more about:

  • the preventative power of bias-aware classrooms;
  • how to identify “hot spots” of disciplinary conflict or differential treatment of particular groups; and
  • steps to take to integrate student and family voice in policies, practices, and procedures concerning school discipline.

As a reminder--watch the MSAN website for archived webinars! Dr. Joy Lawson Davis's fall MSAN webinar on African American and Latinx family engagement in advanced learning is archived here.

Education Next Magazine


Teacher Race and School Discipline 
A North Carolina study analyzed a unique set of student and teacher demographic and discipline data from elementary schools across the state to examine whether being matched to a same-race teacher affects the rate at which students received detentions, were suspended, or were expelled. The data follow individual students over several years, enabling researchers to compare the disciplinary outcomes of students in years when they had a same-race teacher and in years when they did not. The study found evidence that students are less likely to be removed from school as punishment when they and their teachers are the same race--and that this effect is driven almost entirely by black students, especially black boys, who are markedly less likely to be subjected to exclusionary discipline when taught by black teachers.

 Check out this link to an overview and audio of researcher Constance Lindsay discussing her findings with Education Next; click here for a link to the full study.

Lee Williams


MSAN Student Leadership Planning Cohort
MSAN student conference chaperones and advisors work hard before, during, and after the conference. In 2019, a leadership cohort of MSAN student conference chaperones, MSAN student group advisors, and others will think together about new strategies for growing of MSAN's student leadership work. Participants will engage in monthly check-ins and other planning activities over the course of the year. Interested in participating in the cohort, or want to nominate someone from your district to participate? Fill out the form at!

As we pick up the pace of our planning for next year's conference, which will be hosted by Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District, one more BIG thank you to our 2018 conference chaperones! Peter Balas, Frederika Smith, Jullian Gudger, and Ra Alim Shabazz, Alexandria (VA); Mary Custard and Gloria Davis, Amherst-Pelham (MA); Monica Lozano Caldera, Arlington (VA); Lilianne Charles-Kowalchuk and Ana Urian, Birmingham (MI); Erin Blette, Mayra Hernandez, Clifton Jones, Amanda Lehman, and Gabe McCormick, our wonderful hosts at The Public Schools of Brookline (MA); Lorie Clark, Esther Mateo-Orr, and Lee Williams II, Chapel Hill-Carrboro (NC); O'dasha Blue, Shawn Washington, and Nathan Williams, Cleveland Heights-University Heights (OH); Sheri Seyka and Katy Topp, East Lansing (MI); Corey Winchester and Tarhonda Woods, Evanston Township (IL); Kristina Avant and Tyrone Weeks, Farmington (MI); Hannah Bowman and Kirk Moyers, Harrisonburg (VA); Ebrahim Amara, Sean Gray, Andrea Jones, and Johnnie Milton, Madison (WI); Megan Baskin, Michael Kucera, Lucas Leavenworth, and La Wanna Wells, Niles Township (IL); Jeremy Powell and Andrea Riles, Oak Park and River Forest (IL); Matt Case and Jennifer Taylor, Paradise Valley (AZ); Lenora Keel and Jared Warren, Princeton (NJ); Marcia Hicks and Pat Hurley, South Orange & Maplewood (NJ); Hubert McIntyre, Nate Reese, and Ciera Whitsett, Shaker Heights (OH); and Carri Hale and Shawn Harris of Verona (WI).

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