GOOD

Harlem School Teaches Kids Real Irish Jig (and Cultural Understanding)

Closing the achievement gap isn't just about test scores. Harlem Academy is teaching kids how to appreciate a diverse world.

Thanks to Siobhan Ni Mhaolagain, a Fulbright scholar from Dublin, Ireland, elementary school students attending Harlem Academy in New York City now know how to dance an Irish jig. In the video above, you can watch Ni Mhaolagain teaching "Some Say the Devil is Dead," an "old Irish jig that has been danced for generations in Irish homes and local parish halls."


I love this video (and it's not just because I'm half Irish). What's most inspiring about it is that it shows the staff at Harlem Academy understands that closing the achievement gap isn't solely about test scores. It's also about ensuring that students have authentic cultural experiences that help break cycles of racial and ethnic prejudice.

Sadly, our schools are still heavily segregated because our neighborhoods are segregated. You need look no further than this week's shocking anti-Asian rant from UCLA student Alexandra Wallace for proof that school experiences that counteract that segregation by building cultural understanding and breaking down prejudices are essential.

But too many education conversations these days focus solely on improving the lives of children of color merely by drilling them on math and reading and making them take standardized tests. While the academics are undoubtedly important, it's refreshing to see a school recognize that students also need to learn how to function in a diverse world. Let's hope that more schools follow Harlem Academy's lead.

video via Huffington Post

Articles
via Barry Schapiro / Twitter

The phrase "stay in your lane" is usually lobbed at celebrities who talk about politics on Twitter by people who disagree with them. People in the sports world will often get a "stick to sports" when they try to have an opinion that lies outside of the field of play.

Keep Reading
Culture

The Free the Nipple movement is trying to remove the stigma on women's breasts by making it culturally acceptable and legal for women to go topless in public. But it turns out, Free the Nipple might be fighting on the wrong front and should be focusing on freeing the nipple in a place you'd never expect. Your own home.

A woman in Utah is facing criminal charges for not wearing a shirt in her house, with prosecutors arguing that women's chests are culturally considered lewd.

Keep Reading

In August, the Recording Academy hired their first female CEO, Deborah Dugan. Ten days before the Grammys, Dugan was placed on administrative leave for misconduct allegations after a female employee said Dugan was "abusive" and created a "toxic and intolerable" work environment. However, Dugan says she was actually removed from her position for complaining to human resources about sexual harassment, pay disparities, and conflicts of interest in the award show's nomination process.

Just five days before the Grammys, Dugan filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and her claims are many. Dugan says she was paid less than former CEO Neil Portnow. In 2018, Portnow received criticism for saying women need to "step up" when only two female acts won Grammys. Portnow decided to not renew his contract shortly after. Dugan says she was also asked to hire Portnow as a consultant for $750,000 a year, which she refused to do.

Keep Reading