District Blog

Dawn Harris

Posted on: January 11, 2021
Dawn Harris


FHS instructor Dawn Harris to present at national conference

 Dawn Harris, English Language Arts Instructor at Franklin High School, will present two sessions at the Impact Education Conference: Leading by Learning: Grit, Equity, Antiracism, Transformation; and Designing Antiracism Education, Jan. 11-13.

The annual conference, which has gone virtual due to the pandemic, is presented by Sourcewell Technology, whose education division provides schools support with data management services that help to prepare students for success. The conference website notes its focus is "all about leveraging the positives that have come out of teaching and learning during a pandemic. Attendees can expect to learn about how the challenges of 2020 accelerated new ideas, enabled creativity freedoms, and is driving innovative thinking.”

Harris said that there will be "a focus on antiracism education and equity, as much of the recent discussion in education has shifted towards this in light of the events from the past summer involving the murder of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter Movement/Protests." She added, "I’m humbled and honored to have been invited as a featured speaker alongside some amazing individuals doing work in equity and antiracism."

"My featured session focuses on Planning & Designing Antiracism Education for classroom teachers. I will also be co-hosting a joint session with my business partner, Traci Browder, who is also an educator in Mansfield, TX," said Harris. "[Traci] and I have been working together since the beginning of the summer assisting educators and administrators from across the country with coming to the discussion surrounding antiracism and equity in schools with an open heart and an open mind. Together, we walk individuals through the process of understanding the impacts of racism and inequity on students, and we help them to find allies and form action plans that bring awareness and change to their school districts. It has been a joy seeing the transformations that have taken place within the individuals and schools with whom we have worked."

Since the conference is virtual, the 50-minute sessions will be held via Zoom, and presenters will keep participants engaged and interacting with each other using polls, chat features, and breakout rooms.

Harris added, "This summer, Traci and I created GritCrewEDU, a program that provides school districts support in establishing equity teams who work to foster shifts in the attitudes and awareness of K-12 educators, parents, and community members on matters of equity, race, and cultural diversity. Traci and I also co-host the "Lead Like a Pirate" Twitter chat on Saturday mornings with authors Shelley Burgess and Beth Houf, where we focus on equity and antiracism awareness for school leaders."

This is Harris's 7th year with Franklin City Schools and her second at FHS. She teaches both gifted and general education classes. Her first book, Plan Like a Pirate, will be published in August 2021, by Dave Burgess Consulting, Inc., as part of the Pirate Series.