20 Years of History: New York Collective of Radical Educators

ITP student Jenna Queenan (Urban Education PhD) developed the following independent study project.

Faculty advisor: Luke Waltzer

I have been organizing with the New York Collective of Radical Educators (NYCoRE) for over ten years and am doing my dissertation on the collective’s history. I do this work because I believe that in order to understand who NYCoRE is, you need to know about the collective’s history, what NYCoRE has done/does, and the ways it has grown. That information has never been displayed in a public way online. In order to address this problem, I created a timeline for NYCoRE’s website using Knightlab Timeline JS. In developing my proof of concept, I had to ensure that Timeline JS was compatible with wordpress, the website platform NYCoRE uses – luckily it is, although formatting has proven to be a challenge given my limited knowledge of website development.

The project involved many steps: collecting information about NYCoRE’s history through oral history interviews with former members and internal documents/social media, developing criteria with the rest of NYCoRE leadership to select the events for the timeline, writing summaries of the events selected, identifying media (images, interview clips, videos) to pair with each event, and putting all of the information into the excel sheet Knightlab provides. The work also involved a series of member checks: developing the criteria (as I described above), reviewing the events I selected and summaries with NYCoRE leadership, and obtaining permission to use specific interview clips. I appreciate that this project helped me think about the affordances and limitations of timelines as one way to display history.

Tags: teacher activism, timeline, public histories