You’ve Got to be Carefully Taught: Our classrooms are where our children get their social lenses

Event Date & Time

What's Next? Roundtable Series

The College of Liberal Arts is hosting a series of roundtable discussions with community leaders that seeks to answer the question “What’s next for us to eliminate institutional and systemic racism in society in the wake of George Floyd’s death?”

Learn more about the What's Next? series

Share your thoughts...we’re listening

If you were able to attend this event, please let us know what resonated with you.

Event Details

Let’s take a critical look at how curriculum and pedagogy within our public and private elementary and secondary classrooms can shift how our children view themselves and each other as equally important young citizens. Join us for a conversation about education in the context of student resistance and political upheaval. 


Courtney Bell, former Minneapolis High School teacher; Founder and Principal Consultant, Courtney S. Bell Consultants, LLC

Kimberly Colbert, English Teacher, Central High School

Brian D. Lozenski, Associate Professor of Urban and Multicultural Education, Macalester College

Vernon Rowe, Principal, Northeast Middle School 


Rose Brewer, Professor, Department of African American and African Studies, University of Minnesota



Photos of Courtney Bell, Kimberly Colbert, Brian Lozenski, Vernon Rowe, Rose Brewer


Courtney S. Bell (U of M CEHD, 2020) is 1 of 4 children born onto astounding mother and matriarch Tosha Bell-Wooten. She is the Founder and Principal Consultant of Courtney S. Bell Consulting LLC and works to co-create educational equity solutions with Pre-K-12 educational institutions. Courtney was raised in the Sumner Neighborhood of North Minneapolis. Growing up on the Northside of Minneapolis afforded her the opportunity to attend North Community High School. In the fall of 2007, Courtney went on to attend the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities as a first-generation college student. Courtney completed her B.A in the Sociology of Law, Criminology, and Deviance in 2011 and went on to become an associate educator at North High School. After witnessing the impact that caring relationships and high expectations had on children, Courtney decided to return to the University of Minnesota to pursue her M.Ed. and social studies teacher licensure. After completing her M.Ed. in 2014, Courtney returned to North High as the 9th grade African American History/ Human Geography teacher. During her 4th year of teaching Courtney was nominated for and became 1 of 12 finalists for the 2018 Minnesota Teacher of the Year. In June of 2018, Courtney transitioned from the classroom to pursue educational leadership and consulting, with the goal of spreading her love of education more broadly. 

Rose Brewer, a Morse-Alumni Distinguished Teaching Professor, has received the African American Learning Resources Center Award for Teaching Excellence, the American Sociological Association Distinguished Career Award for the Practice of Sociology, and numerous other awards. In 1999 she was inducted into the National Academy of Distinguished Teachers. Professor Brewer has written extensively on black families, race, class and gender, and public policy, publishing over 60 refereed journal articles, book chapters, and scholarly essays in these areas. She has spent over a decade working on curriculum transformation and progressive pedagogy, and consults nationally on issues of race, class, and gender in the curriculum.

Kimberly Colbert began her career in education as an educational support professional (ESP) for St. Paul Public Schools. After earning her master's in teaching from the University of St. Thomas, she worked one year as a theater specialist in Minneapolis and returned to St. Paul as a high school English teacher. Kimberly was the first person of color (AfroAsian) to be elected to the National Education Association Board of Directors, representing Education Minnesota (the state's educator union and served for two years as the NEA Board Black Caucus Chair. She also served as a negotiator, executive board member and secretary for the St. Paul Federation of Educators. After working for three years as the racial equity organizer for Ed Mn, Kimberly returned to the classroom and is now working as an English teacher for St. Paul Central High School.

Brian D. Lozenski is an associate professor of urban and multicultural education in the Educational Studies Department at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota. His research explores the intersections of critical participatory action research, black intellectual traditions in education, and cultural sustainability. Prior to pursuing his Ph.D., Dr. Lozenski taught for over a decade in his hometown of Philadelphia, PA and then St. Paul, MN. As a teacher educator and researcher he has worked with other educators, parents, schools, and districts to develop perspectives and strategies that aspire toward social justice while illuminating the historical realities that have created current educational disparities. He has publications in educational research journals such as Harvard Educational Review, Review of Research in Education, and Equity & Excellence in Education, among others. Dr. Lozenski holds deep commitments to a community-engaged scholarship. In this effort he is affiliated with organizations such as the Network for the Development of Children of African Descent, the Education for Liberation Network, and the Twin Cities Solidarity Committee.

Vernon Rowe is the Principal of Northeast Middle School in Minneapolis MN. He has worked for Minneapolis Public Schools for 26 years as a Social Studies Teacher for 8 years and as an Administrator on the Middle and High School levels for 18 years. Vernon has also served as an Adjunct Professor in the Educational Leadership Program at Concordia University. Prior to joining Minneapolis Public Schools Vernon worked for Monsanto Agricultural Company in Sales and Marketing from 1991 – 1994. Vernon received his B.S. degrees from the University of Minnesota (Economics) and St. Cloud State University (Education). He received his M.A. from St. Mary’s University of Minnesota (Human Development). Vernon’s beliefs for education are: Promoting a social justice platform in education to dismantle the status quo practices that hinder equity. Building positive relationships and partnerships with shareholders, colleges and universities, community organizations, and most importantly with students, to create a constructive learning environment where TRUST and RESPECT from all cultural perspectives are always considered and practiced. Vernon is the first recipient of The University of Minnesota, College of Liberal Arts Civitas Community Partner Award, and Northeast Middle School received the CLAgency Award for its partnership with the College of Liberal Arts and with the Minnesota Youth Story Squad.

Share on: