Video Description: Andrea, dressed in a black shirt and black light cardigan with jeans, dances outside in a backyard. She turns to her left, hits a pose to the left and then right, bends down, then pops up while snapping her right finger in the air. She laughs. There are grass, trees, flowers, and a rural wooden fence in the background.

Hi, I'm Andrea.

How I Got Here

Throughout my experience as a Black Deaf student and as a Black Deaf K-12 teacher of the Deaf, I noticed that Deaf/Hard of Hearing students, especially D/HH students of color, were enduring unnecessary hardships and circumstances, including systemic oppressions such as racism, ableism, audism, and more in life and schools.

The problem is that even with passion and good intentions as a teacher, I was neither aware of nor understood how my daily actions in the classroom did or did not promote further suffering for my students.

Although I desired to truly understand the choices I made, the reason behind those choices, and the changes I needed to make to promote students’ freedom from harm in my classroom, I couldn't find the specific resources that would help deepen my understanding and commitment to transformative action. I needed something that was:

  • accessible

  • informative

  • inspirational

  • community-based

  • compassionate

So, I decided to join a Deaf Ed PhD program and address my concerns through research. In the past several years, I've discovered that there are a variety of ways to promote students’ freedom and minimize harm. One of them I will focus on in my service with teachers, coaches, and leaders is a mental habit known as "critical consciousness" practiced through the lens of self-compassion.

In 2014, I conducted my first pilot study on critical consciousness with a fellow Black Deaf educator and it was one of the most enlightening experiences I've ever had. Learning what that practice looks like for me made me a better person, teacher, and researcher.

As teachers, we want to do what we can to help eradicate the unnecessary suffering that so many of our students are experiencing these days. So, I created CC School to help all of us do the inner work it takes for us to be most effective in our outer work - in classrooms, schools, and communities no matter where, when, or how. 

Education Experience

2011
English, B.A.

Louisiana State University

2012
Deaf Studies/Deaf Education, M.S.

Lamar University

2017
Deaf Education, Ed.S.

Gallaudet University

Teaching Experience

2011
Middle/High School English Teacher

Louisiana School for the Deaf in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

2015
High School English Teacher

Model Secondary School for the Deaf in Washington, D.C.

2018
Middle School English Teacher

Prince George County D/HH Program in Mitchellville, MD

Research, Presentations, Publications, Etc.

August 2014

Southern Regional Black Deaf Advocates Conference:

"The Experiences of Black Deaf Families" 

Presenter/Research Assistant

May 2014

Eastern Regional Black Deaf Advocates Conference:

"The Experiences of Black Deaf Families"

Presenter/Research Assistant

May 2014

Eastern Regional Black Deaf Advocates Conference:

"The Experiences of Black Deaf Families"

Presenter/Research Assistant

June 2015

District of Columbia Area Black Deaf Advocates General Meeting:

"What Do Black Deaf Students Teach Us?"

Presenter

August 2015

National Black Deaf Advocates (NBDA) Conference:

"Protecting Deaf Children of Color"

Co-presenter

August 2015

NBDA's Collegiate Black Deaf Students Leadership Institute:

"-Isms and the Principles of Social Justice"

Presenter

November 2015

Gallaudet University's Students of Color Leadership Institute:

"Principles and Dimensions of Social Justice"

Presenter

March 2016

District of Columbia Area Black Deaf Advocates General Meeting:

"Becoming a Critical Educator in Deaf Education"

Presenter

July 2016

Teachers College, Columbia University's Summer Principals Academy 2016 Equity Series: 

"Culturally Responsive Leadership for Diverse Deaf Communities"

Co-presenter

July 2017

Teachers for Social Justice - Deaf Learners Retreat: 

"Teaching for Social Justice with Self-Compassion"

Presenter

September 2017

Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center:

"An Interpreted Education: What You Need to Know"

Webcast Host

Click on the title to view the webcast!

October 2017

WithLove DC's Women of the Wild 2017 Gathering:

"What is Self-Compassion?"

Presenter

April 2018

Teaching, Learning, and Enacting of Self-Study Methodology: Unraveling a Complex Interplay 

"Standing in a Messy Sandpit: The Learning Side of Self-Study Research"

Chapter Co-author

May 2018

Deafhood Foundation:

Climbing the Avalanche

Research Assistant

Click on the title to view the film!

July 2018

The Learning Center for the Deaf's 2018 Literacy Institute:

"Critical Consciousness: An Effective Habit for Teaching with Equity in Mind"

Presenter

September 2018

District of Columbia Area Black Deaf Advocates Awards Banquet:

"Legacy: Honoring Our History, Celebrating Our Future"

Guest Speaker

September 2018

The Language and Life Project:

Signing Black in America 

Documentary Participant

"If we want to dismantle anti-black linguistic racism, we must include Black ASL. This documentary is a crucial tool we can use to start that conversation."
– Jeffrey Levi Palmer, Research Associate, University of Texas at Austin

Click on the title to view the documentary!

March 2019

The Kennedy Center's VSA Intersections Conference:

"Critical Consciousness in Special Education and the Arts"

Presenter

September 2020

Digital Promise: Accelerating Innovation in Education

"Deaf Learners: Designing Practice to Support Their Learner Variability, Culture, and Families"

Co-Presenter

Click on the title to view the webinar!

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