Coffee & Conversation: Centering Authentic Youth Leadership in Education

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How can we support authentic student leadership in our efforts to create equitable learning spaces?

Our guests Brenda Aviles and Molly Cohen from Diversity Talks discuss how the organization is working to challenge beliefs about what it means to truly center youth in efforts to transform the education system. Brenda and Molly share lessons from Diversity Talks’ unique youth-led professional development and National Abolitionist Leaders Fellowship to have a frank conversation about addressing white supremacy culture in our schools.

Brenda Aviles is a Curriculum Specialist at Diversity Talks with over 20 years experience in education. She began her career as an elementary school teacher, became a coach and eventually a professional developer serving districts across the country. Her cross educational approach allows her to see the various lenses through which Black and Brown children are seen and unseen. Her career has focused on social justice and she firmly believes in empowering Black and Brown folx so that they can challenge and disrupt these systems of oppression.

Molly Cohen  is Director of Strategic Partnerships at Diversity Talks. Molly's career has been focused on amplifying marginalized voices to catalyze systemic change. Her roles have been diverse -- from supporting survivors of domestic violence, to coaching middle schoolers in an underfunded urban middle school, to helping drive national expansion of action civics education. As a white woman in the process of continually learning, she strives to approach all of her work in a way that is intentional, authentic, and relationship-driven.

Interested in opportunities to learn from other educators?  Take the Core Advocate survey to learn about upcoming Coffee and Conversations and other free events.

Have a topic in mind for further discussion or feedback about the event?  We want to hear from you! Please reach out to Joy  Delizo-Osborne.