Monday, December 18, 2017

4C18 Update - Welcoming Survey Out and All-Convention Event Moving Forward




I hope everyone has had a stimulating Fall semester or quarter, with bright and eager students, interesting work with them and colleagues, and time to rest and recharge for the coming year. I know I have, and I'm very grateful for my colleagues and students at UW Tacoma, and I'm most grateful these days for my hard-working colleagues associated with CCCC, all of whom are an important part of this year's annual convention. So thank you again to Jane Greer (Local Arrangements Chair) and her group on the ground in KC, and of course, the growing SJAC task force. Without all these and many other folks, like Emily Nafziger, Kristen Suchor, and Marlene Knight (at NCTE headquarters), we wouldn't have a convention or an organization.

Here's the updates on the planning and preparations for 4C18.
  1. Collaboration with local activists (Ersula Ore, Victor Del Hierro, Romeo Garcia, David Green). This group is just about done with their initial duties, and likely will join the other groups who need help. All but a one or two local groups have been contacted about collaborating with us at the convention. Literacy KC is the first to join the program, and will be one of the organizations who will participate in the all-convention event (#8 below). 
  2. Technology and Access (F2F and OL) (Stephanie Kerschbaum, Aja Y. Martinez, Bump Halbritter, Casie Moreland, Zan Goncalves, Brenda Brueggeman, Chad Iwertz, Ruth Osorio, Kristen Ruccio, and Dev Bose). I want to welcome Dev to the group. There is nothing new to report here.
  3. Welcoming Companions Project (Al Harahap, Brent Chappelow, Dana Driscoll, Brian Hendrickson, Amy Meckenburg-Faenger, Alisa Russell, Mary Stewart, and Matthew Vetter). This work group has changed it's name for clarity purposes. It was previously "safety and security." The Cs the Day (Scott Reed) and FourCForEquality (@4C4Equality) continue to work closely with this group. The survey was sent out on Thursday, Dec 14 and will close the survey to responses on Dec 30. Please take a few minutes and provide feedback. As of this Sunday, Dec 17, there are 285 responses to the survey, so I'd love to see a lot more. 
  4. Donation to Local Movements (Casie Moreland, Kayla Bruce, Jess Boykin, and Hillary Coenen). Casie and her group still need a number of volunteers to sign up on their sign-up sheet. Please go to their sign-up sheet to volunteer for a time slot at the convention. The organizations they will be collecting donations for are: Literacy KC, The Center for American Indian Community Health, and Black Lives Matter
  5. Letter Writing Campaign (Holly Hassel). Nothing new to report here. This work is mostly done. 
  6. Work with Local Committee and Activists on Press Release and Press Coverage (Jessie Moore). Nothing new to report here. This work will start in February. 
  7. Preconvention Statement on Actions, Activities (Michael Pemberton and Romeo Garcia). Michael, Romeo, and I have started to draft a statement that will go into the program and on the convention's web site(s). More on this soon. 
  8. All-Convention Activity (Holly Hassel, Jessie Moore, David Green). Much work has been accomplished in this group. We've decide to do an activity together, one that asks all of us (CCCCs members) to both reflect upon on activism we can do at our home sites and communities, and within the CCCCs organization. To do this reflective work, we are inviting several local KC activists to talk about their work (once they are all confirmed I'll let you know their names), and I'm reaching out to a number of CCCC members and others, particularly scholars and activists working outside the U.S., who might offer something to us in the form of  short statements of some kind. These statements will be circulated to all CCCCs members about a month before the convention, and with the local activists' ideas, we'll use all this information to help us think about our own activism. Here's the structure of the all-convention event that we've designed: 
Title: Literacy, Language, and Labor for Social Justice: Outward and Inward Reflection
Goals: Learn from Kansas City activism and work, have conversation and dialogue with colleagues, brainstorm/identify organizational activism/social justice/inclusion and diversity needs, learn strategies for bringing activism and social justice work to participants' local sites
Structure:  1:45-3:00 pm
1:45-1:50 pm. Introduction/overview from convention chair
Provide a handout (before the convention) that offers short (200-300 word) statements that provide ideas, concerns, questions from activists, caucus members, and others in our fields with specific attention to the intersections of literacy and social justice. 
1:50-2:15 pm: Panel of Speakers reflecting on the interactions between literacy and social justice (each get 5-10 minutes to prod us, to orient us) - Possible speakers (not all are confirmed), include:
2:15-2:45 pm: Discussion and engagement. 
Participants engage in structured drafting on a shared document or online space to generate ideas in response to a prompt at their table. Facilitators or table leaders will manage the work at tables.  
2:45-3:00 pm: Roaming mic, tables volunteer to share their discussion, reflection, conversation, identify follow up tasks, goals, or needs
Follow-Up: (after the session)
To help frame the all-convention activity and make it more meaningful to convention-goers, everyone will be encouraged to do some or all of the following after the event: 
  • Do more activist and reflective work in the expo at stations or tables. These could be small tasks that folks can do in 15-20 minutes, maybe talk, maybe write, maybe learn about something particular, then write and talk. 
  • Engage in other activist-based work already happening in the expo, like the letter writing and fundraising tables and the Welcoming Companions table.
  • Ask folks to go through the escape rooms that will include a significant reflection time where participants make sense of their experience in terms of the convention themes, access, privilege, etc.
  • Ask folks to engage in the Cs the Day gaming activities, since everyone will get those materials at registration.
  • Contribute or talk back in some way to someone while at the convention, either informally or formally. There may be opportunities to contribute something to the 4C18 podcast that will be running during the convention. We might have a booth in the expo where folks can come after the all-convention event and be interviewed by someone on the podcast/media team.
  1. Program Statement and Cover Art (Al Harahap, Michael Pemberton, and Romeo Garcia). I'm still working with Paul Tosh and his student group. I'm expecting some samples very soon. 
  2. Pre- and Post-Workshops Dedicated to Activism and Organizing (Michael Pemberton, Romeo Garcia). For Workshop #1, Frankie Condon and Vershawn Young, among others, including Merrell R. Bennekin from the Kansas City police), will be participating. One important note about registration on these: These will be free of charge, but they have not yet been added to list of workshops (see below) on the NCTE/CCCC web site, but if you wish to attend them, please register. 
The pre-convention workshops have been posted (as of Dec 07), so they are available to read here, and again, the new workshops that will be free of charge (#10 above) have not yet been added to these web pages, but they will soon: 
Finally, our acceptance numbers look very good, I think. We have a total of 3,005 speaking roles on the program. Here's how things are shaking out:
  • Roles Accepted: 2,595 (86.36%)
  • Roles Declined: 269 (8.95%)
  • No Response: 141 (4.69%)
Because the next installment of my 4C18 update series lands on the New Year (Jan 01 is a Monday), my next installment will be Monday, Jan 08. 
 
Peace to you all, and happy holidays. May your new year be merry! 

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