2019 NATIONAL TEACHER OF THE YEAR FIGHTS FOR EQUITY AND JUSTICE
2019 National Teacher of the Year, an advocate for equity and justice, and 19-year teaching veteran, Rodney A. Robinson, has recently been named a Senior Advisor for Richmond Public Schools.
"We are thrilled to have Rodney back and to have him join the RPS Family in this capacity … Rodney is a fierce fighter for equity, a proponent of abolitionist teaching, and an all-around force to be reckoned with. We not only need his voice at the table; we need him leading the very important work of helping RPS become an anti-racist school division." said RPS Superintendent Jason Kamras.
As a scholar of the Yale Teachers Institute, Robinson has developed and published curriculum units on race, class, and punishment. His prior education experience includes teaching at a school inside the Richmond Juvenile Detention Center called Virgie Binford Education Center. Robinson is also a member of Mayor Levar Stoney's Education Compact Team and Task Force.
He initiated meetings about dismantling the school-to-prison pipeline, under-representation of black male educators, education curriculums for juvenile detention centers with national and local government officials, Richmond teachers, and education leaders as National Teacher of the Year.
"Being National Teacher of the Year afforded me the opportunity to establish relationships and learn best practices from colleges, states, and organizations who are doing the work of promoting cultural equity in the classroom," said Rodney Robinson. "I am excited I have been given the chance to do this important work in the Richmond community. All students benefit from educators who look like them and appreciate their culture. I'm going to work hard to ensure that the students in Richmond get what they need and deserve.", Robinson said.
Today, Robinson begins his male teachers of color program. The initiative will ensure the development of partnerships with organizations that assists Richmond Public Schools with recruiting male teachers of color. Robinson will also collaborate with the Talent Office to cultivate new teachers' mentorship opportunities and establish the division's anti-racism policy agenda.