Implicit Biases and Their Ramifications

January 18, 2022
AUTHOR
Headshot
AUTHOR

Jerri Kemble

Former Assistant Superintendent

,

Lawrence Public Schools, KS

AUTHOR
Headshot
AUTHOR

Jerri Kemble

Former Assistant Superintendent

,

Lawrence Public Schools, KS

AUTHOR
Headshot
AUTHOR

Jamie Saponaro

Director of Educational Success

,

ClassLink

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We’re trying something new at LinkedUp! Each month we’re highlighting a recent podcast on the ClassLink blog because the information and ideas discussed are just so powerful and useful to educators, they deserve a second look.

This month we picked Implicit Biases and Their Ramifications (Episode 63).

In this episode, Dr. Alan Phan (Founding Head of School, Royal Embassy Academy) shares what exactly implicit biases are, how we can recognize them and what we can do to combat them in our daily lives and work.

Here are some of the key ideas we took away from this episode:

  • To understand implicit bias, we first must make the unconscious conscious. Here are common implicit biases we may have without even knowing:
    • A person’s name
    • Gender
    • Race
    • Age
    • Location
    • Job title
    • Education level
  • “I’m colorblind,” or, “I don’t see color,” may be a phrase you’ve heard or even said yourself. While the sentiment behind this is well-intentioned, its impact can do more harm than good. If you don’t recognize a person’s background and experiences—and how they’re different from your own—you’re negating their experiences as a person.
  • Learning to empathize is part of the process! Don’t be afraid to ask questions and learn about others before assuming. Remember to remove the stereotype and see the person while celebrating and embracing their diverse background.
  • Reflecting on your own implicit bias is uncomfortable and taking the first step can be intimidating. Try these tips for reflecting on implicit bias:
    • Start Simple
      For example, think of the name Mario Gonzales and ask yourself what’s your first association with that name? Now, take some time to unpack those associations.
    • Take Your Time
      When you’re reaching out to others, take a moment to think about what bias you may have towards their gender, age, or even their height! No one has ever unlearned their biases overnight, this work is ongoing and takes time. Making the effort to think before assuming is already combating implicit bias.
    • Check Yourself!
      Don’t be afraid to check yourself! If you have a thought about a certain person, ask yourself why you thought that and make a change.

Remember: diversity, equity, and inclusion work in schools and beyond is not a one-session or one-time thing. This work isn’t easy, it can be uncomfortable and it’s hard. But it’s ongoing and worth it.

Check out the full episode on Apple, Spotify, and YouTube for all the details.

Explore Further

Learn more on recognizing and understanding implicit biases, as well as supporting equity in your school district, with these resources:

Don’t forget to listen to three of our podcasts from our themed choice boards to earn 0.5 of CEU credit. Simply submit this form when you finish.

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Education Leaders

About the Author

About the Authors

Jerri Kemble

Former Assistant Superintendent

,

Lawrence Public Schools, KS

Jamie Saponaro

Director of Educational Success

,

ClassLink