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(De)-Constructing an Anti-Racist Classroom

“The classroom remains the most radical space of possibility in the academy”

bell hooks

All learners have a right to learn in an equitable environment where all cultures, identities, and languages are recognised and valued. And where the school is able to respond to the diverse needs of individual learners, reflecting the uniqueness of their communities.


Following the success and learning of our 2021 anti-racist teacher training program, Class 13 is launching our (De)Constructing an Anti-Racist Classroom course. 


This course aims to empower teachers with accurate information and knowledge, enabling them to tackle racism and other forms of inequality, challenging the associated attitudes. The impact of this message on students can be compromised if teachers and school staff are not themselves fully informed and confident in dealing with these issues. 

The (De)-Constructing an Anti-Racist Classroom course is your unique opportunity to receive the knowledge, resources, and tools you need, delivered in-person or online and in three sequential modules. This will enable you to go at your own pace and allows space for reflection while creating a safe environment for you to receive coaching in challenging  racism and other forms of inequality, and to address any concerns you may have. The modules will provide social, supportive, and thought-provoking facilitation for you to transform your teaching and engagement with all students

Why are deficit thinking and anti-racist education important?

I found 'deficit' thinking a really useful idea - that is also being talked about in other ways in current educational training. It seemed to me the most obvious way to try and reshape my thinking about race and the experience of students who are educated in a racist system. 

2020/21 Participant, Head of English

  • An anti-deficit thinking approach improves the confidence and self-efficacy of learners.

  • All learners are empowered to develop an understanding of their own values, beliefs, cultures, and those of others.

  • Having a teacher who’s committed to anti-racist education helps children to understand and realize their own rights and the rights of others within the school, within the community, and globally.

  • Anti-racist education helps learners to understand the harmful consequences of racism and encourages them to actively challenge it wherever it occurs.

  • It helps to ensure that the learning environment is an inclusive one, without racial inequality or racism.

  • It nurtures inquiry and critical thinking in learners which helps them to develop a deeper understanding of the past and present.

  • An understanding of deficit thinking enables educators to understand the root causes of racism and other forms of inequality

  • Race equality education provides a vehicle for all educators to demonstrate their professional values.

The above means that deficit thinking and anti-racism considerations in education are the responsibility of all, and essential in all educational settings across the globe. Let's each do our part where we are.

Who should enroll in this course? 

‘I think a lot more before I act. I am more vocal and challenge people when I see or hear something that is racist.’


2020/21 Participant, Early Years Teacher 

(De)constructing an anti-racist classroom is always a work in progress, there are different pathways for different educators, and differs depending on who you are. This program is designed for teachers at all levels of experience who are looking for practical advice and techniques to (de)-construct an anti-racist classroom. You will be provided many opportunities throughout the course for you recognize and reflect on your current teaching practices, then respond by putting your learning into action in your school. 

What you will get when you enroll:

  • Access to carefully curated readings and resources

​The sessions are grounded in the latest and most innovative educational research, participants will have access to a wealth of academic and multimedia learning resources. 

  • Practical assignments to put your new learning into action

Teachers will be given practical assignments where they will put their learning into practice. They will also have opportunities to share their ideas with our ever-expanding community of learners. 

  • Small facilitation groups 

​Our learning groups are small to ensure that all learners are able to get the most out of the programme. Facilitators will tailor the material to the groups’ participants, allowing time during sessions to discuss issues as they arise.

Please note  We have a cap of 4 teachers from one school within any of our groups, if this is the case please get in touch regarding our inset /in-school offer - 

Who should enroll?

Interested in joining our learning community ?

Currently, Class 13 does not have confirmed dates for our next course. Please complete the below expression of interest form to be notified when the dates go live and ask any specific questions you may have. 

Expression of Interest 
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Module 1 - Breakdown

Sneak Peak of the Course Outline and Breakdown:

Module 1 - An Anti-Racist Understanding of Deficit Thinking


'Deficit ideology defines every social problem in relation to those toward the bottom of the power hierarchy, trains our gaze in that direction, and as a result, manipulates the popular discourse in ways that protect and reify existing sociopolitical conditions' 

- Paul Gorski


Aim: Identify the symptoms of structural inequity in your classroom and build capacity to champion more equitable practices in your school. 

Learning objectives:

  • To understand the concept of deficit ideology 

  • To understand the principles of anti-racist practice

  • To recognise the historical correlation between deficit ideology and racism. 

  • To recognize how deficit thinking and racism affect educational outcomes at school, particularly at your own school.

  • To be able to identify deficit thinking when it happens, and mitigate its impact within your own classroom.

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