Perhaps the end of a long, tough year is the most important time to name what we stand for. To let our values and vision ring out. And to stand with those who are brave enough to continue to fight.
We stand with teachers and their teachers.
We stand with Dreamers (and their dreams).
We stand with Ahmed and Rochelle and Waters and .
We stand up for science.
We stand with #metoo and #blacklivesmatter and #loveislove and #nohumanisillegal.
We stand up for those who resist and speak up and unsubscribe.
We stand up for kindness and friendship, and for walking toward one another.
We stand up for those who can’t.
We stand up for the Best. Job. Ever.
At Trellis, we view STEM teaching and learning as an act of social justice and we are working to ensure that our most untapped student populations have access to amazing STEM teachers. Great teachers are made, not born. And Trellis is helping to create the long term support required to fix the leaky STEM pipeline and give students the teaching and opportunities they deserve. When we stand up for teachers, they can stand up for their students. We are proud to say we stood up for teachers in 2017, and we will stay standing.
Clayton has had a very diverse career in both public and private sector. Prior to joining Adobe, Clayton spent the past 2 ½ years supporting the Global Marketing function for Visa, providing strategy, planning and finance leadership for the North America, Visa Checkout and Insights + Analytics teams. Before Visa, he co-founded a startup called SeedTalent focused on matchmaking MBA talent with early-stage companies while also consulting for education non-profits on building out their finance, operations and management practices. Before his venture into the entrepreneurial world, Clayton spent 3 years trying to transform the K-12 education landscape for Chicago Public Schools (CPS) as a selected member of the Broad Residency, a program that matches talented professionals with senior management roles in public education agencies throughout the nation. His time with CPS was “very insightful” and a far cry from his days in investment banking for Lehman Brothers and his early days in consumer marketing and strategic finance at Time Inc. for Sports Illustrated, People, Martha Stewart Living and Sunset.
Clayton received his Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and his Bachelors of Science in Economics at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania (“go Quakers”). A native New Yorker with Trinidadian roots, he currently resides in Oakland with his wife and two firecracker daughters. In his spare time, he enjoys basketball, hitting the gym, music and video games. If he was not at Adobe, Clayton would be trying to build urban communities through real estate and education or lobbying Steve Mills to join his management team to completely turn around the New York Knicks.
We are appalled at recent neo-Nazi activism and the abject failures of people in power to condemn it. But as schools begin this year I have been reflecting on why the groundswells of disgust among those committed to issues of social justice are often reactive.
Our public education system does not serve our students of color. Segregated schools continue to disproportionately harm Black and Latino students and schools are becoming more and more segregated by race and socio-economic status every day, especially in states like California. This is a persistent issue of racism, inequity and social injustice. Where is our protest of this?
School segregation is just one of many examples of the institutionalized and long-standing racism that is sewn into the fabric of our society. This will persist until acknowledged more universally and unwoven. Martin Luther King Jr. reminds us that “what will be remembered is not the words of our enemies, but the silences of our friends.” When we choose to protest white supremacy, we must also question why we support and send our children to segregated schools. We must recognize that for many of us it is a privilege to be able to protest racism, prejudice, injustice, and hatred when it is convenient or safe. It is not ethical, however, to accept some parts of a racist society and not others.
At Trellis Education we believe the opportunity to learn STEM is a civil right, and thus that great STEM teaching is an act of social justice. Our community’s work is a daily protest of the inequitable access of students of color to effective, resilient teachers with whom they identify and trust. My friends, let us not be silent. Join us in this daily protest.
To transforming teaching together,
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