NCTE Presents - A Conversation on Antiracist Book Selection - National Council of Teachers of English

Thursday, October 1, 2020
8:00 P.M. – 9:15 P. M. ET



Plan to join NCTE for this live event centered on antiracist book selection and raising attention regarding critical reading. We will talk about the importance of the sources of book promotions, such as reviews, blogs, and similar forms of communication. This panel discussion will be a catalyst for educators and teachers to draw closer review of the source of text recommendations, as well as provide knowledge to guide the creation of book lists. It is our desire to initiate change and action.

Read this blog post by Linda Sue Park, author and originator of this idea.



LINDA SUE PARK is the author of many books for young readers, including the 2002 Newbery Medal winner A SINGLE SHARD and the NYTimes bestseller A LONG WALK TO WATER. Her most recent titles are PRAIRIE LOTUS, a historical fiction middle-grade novel, and GURPLE AND PREEN, a picture book illustrated by Debbie Ridpath Ohi. She serves on the advisory boards of We Need Diverse Books, the Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators, and the Rabbit hOle children’s literature museum project, and has been a panelist for several awards and grants, including the Kirkus Prize, the National Book Award, the PEN Naylor grant, and the SCBWI Golden Kite Award. Linda Sue knows very well that she will never be able to read every great book ever written, but she keeps trying anyway.



KEVIN NOBLE MAILLARD is the debut author of Fry Bread, published by Roaring Brook/Macmillan. He is also a regular writer and former contributing editor to the New York Times, with additional writings in The Atlantic, Essence, and The Week. He has provided on-air commentary for MSNBC, CNN, ABC, and Al Jazeera. Currently based in Manhattan, New York, he splits time between the city and upstate New York, where he is a tenured professor of law at Syracuse University. A graduate of Duke University and Penn Law School, he also earned a PhD in Political Theory from the University of Michigan. Originally from Oklahoma, he is an enrolled citizen of the Seminole Nation.


DONALYN MILLER is an award-winning Texas teacher, literacy consultant, and author (or co-author) of numerous articles, books, and essays about engaging young people with reading, increasing book access, and creating positive reading communities, including The Book Whisperer (Jossey-Bass, 2009), Reading in the Wild (Jossey-Bass, 2013), and Game Changer: Book Access for All Kids (co-written with Colby Sharp/ Scholastic, 2018). Donalyn currently works as a literacy coach and advisor for many schools and non-profit organizations across North America. 

LYNSEY BURKINS has been a passionate elementary educator for the past sixteen years. She believes that radical love is at the heart of her practice and works to amplify the voices in her classroom daily. Helping students access their world through literacy is what drives her social justice stance on teaching. Lynsey is a graduate of Bowling Green State University and The Ohio State University. She has published work with Teaching Tolerance and Scholastic Books and blogs monthly with Teachers Books Readers. Lynsey is the chair of NCTE’s Build Your Stack® where she gets to collaborate with an amazing team of educators from across the country on putting the right books in the hands of kids.

JULIA E. TORRES is a veteran language arts teacher and librarian in Denver, Colorado. Julia facilitates teacher development workshops rooted in the areas of anti-racist education, equity and access in literacy and librarianship, and education as a practice of liberation. Julia works with students and teachers locally and around the country with the goal of empowering them to use literacy to fuel resistance and positive social transformation. Julia also serves on several local and national boards and committees promoting educational equity and progressivism. She is the current NCTE Secondary Representative-at-large, an Educolor Collective steering committee member, a Book Love Foundation board member one an Educator Collaborative Book Ambassador.

DR. LAURA JIMÉNEZ received a Ph. D. in Educational Psychology and Educational Technology from Michigan State University in 2013. She is currently a senior lecturer and the chair of the Language of Literacy department at Boston University Wheelock College of Education & Human Development. Her scholarship focuses on the ways teachers can teach social justice with and through children’s literature. Her research has focused on graphic novel reading comprehension, and the representation of marginalized people, history, and communities in children’s literature. Her work spans both literature and literacy, with a special interest in graphic novel reading comprehension and issues of representation in young adult literature. Her scholarship appears in The Reading Teacher, Journal of Lesbian Studies, Teaching and Teacher Education, and the Journal of Literacy Research. Her book reviews, and calls for social justice in children’s literature can be found on her blog, and on her frequent Tweets @booktoss.