Epiphany of Learning By: Mathew mccown

My Epiphany in TCH 219

Throughout the semester in TCH 219 with Dr. Percell I have gained an immense amount of knowledge and experiences that I will refer back to in many future situations. However, there is one experience that will be held as my "Ah Ha" moment. This experience brought a million thoughts and ideas into my head and will forever shape my future perspective and attitude toward teaching. This moment came at the Cultural Responsive Conference held in late October in the Bone Student Center on Campus. Dr. Percell scheduled for the class to attend the event and it sure left many thoughts in my head. The conference the class attended was led by a keynote speaker, Christine Sleeter. She focused on her experiences in urban school settings and diverse school settings. She did a fantastic job and really educated me.

What exactly is my epiphany or "Ah Ha" moment? Well it is somewhat complicated for me to explain but I will try my best. From the conference, what left the biggest impression on me was the last question from a high school student, "Are you surprised that there is more white people here than other races because it is a cultural conference?" This question really threw me off as well as throwing off the keynote speaker, Christine. She didn't know how to answer the question and neither did I. It got me thinking about diversity and education and how it has never been consistently equal for all races, genders, backgrounds and other forms of diversity. I understand that some races have had better opportunities than others in previous history but you can look at all the different races and ethnicities and point out a part of the education system that is flawed for them. That was my epiphany moment, the moment I realized that education has never been fair or equal to all races at one time. Whether it be black people being segregated from white people, students in urban areas getting less attention and non-efficient resources to learn or a white student not being able to apply for a scholarship because he isn't black or because he doesn't live in poverty. In some shape or form almost every race, ethnicity, cultural or other forms of diversification has been screwed by our education system. Once this moment hit me I started asking myself how can I make a change.

This isn't me complaining about how life isn't fair or how I personally have been wronged by an education system. I understand life isn't always fair and that to succeed in it you have to overcome challenges. What I am saying is that there is a better way to use the resources education has to offer to better provide access to education for every student who wants it and deserves it. I would like to say I know the answer to this question that has been asked a thousand and sometimes but I obviously don't. What I do know is that because of this class I am now aware of the issue and better prepared to go look and found that solution.

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Mathew McCown
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