Because Latinos comprise the largest minority group in the United States, our country's socioeconomic well-being is tied to their educational success. In the cover story of the Spring 2017 issue of American Educator, Patricia Gándara explains that while the challenges related to Latino students often dominate education discussions, we must also focus on the many assets these young people bring with them if we are serious about helping them achieve.
Building on Gándara's article are two essays by AFT Vice Presidents Evelyn DeJesus and Catalina R. Fortino. DeJesus reassures Latino children, who, historically, have had no voice, and undocumented students and educators, who fear deportation, that they can all count on the AFT to support them, while Fortino discusses the creation and promise of an AFT resolution on improving outcomes for Latino youth and addressing the needs of the Latino community.
The next article focuses on the benefits of recess. Researchers explain why unstructured play, with adult supervision, gives children the opportunity to develop social and emotional skills that are critical to a well-rounded education.
The issue also includes an article on how a labor-management effort in New York City enables schools with a record of collaboration to make changes outside the contract and regulations to support student learning and teacher development.
Rounding out the new issue are two more articles: one on how the teacher residency is a practical path to recruitment and retention, and the other on how teaching the backstories of famous scientists may help students realize that their own struggles in science are not unique and can be overcome.