Virtual Office Hours for Teachers on Labor-Based Grading Contracts

Last night, I was thinking out loud on Twitter, and asked if I had online office hours for any teacher who had questions about their use (or potential use) of labor-based grading contracts in their courses, would anyone be interested? Within hours I got thousands of engagements with the tweet, and 60 replies. So I'm gonna try out some labor-based grading contract office hours this coming week -- that's, July 7 - 11

Please keep in mind that these are not webinars or workshops. They are office hours where teachers can ask me questions about their use of labor-based grading contracts. 

For this first time around, I'll try to do the best I can with how the whole process works (i.e. signing up, scheduling, etc.), so please be patient and bear with me. Know that I want to talk to you if you have questions and want to talk to me. Also know that I'm trying to protect myself in this process. 

After looking at my schedule for next week, I have enough time to do 23 one-on-one meetings with individual teachers and one larger, group office hour meeting, which will be recorded. The group meeting will start at 12:30 PM (PST) on Friday, July 10. It will be limited to the first 25 teachers who are interested, since I want the time to be intimate and give everyone a chance to ask questions and talk. If there is a lot more interest, then I may open another group office hour meeting in the week. We'll see. 

How to Sign Up
If you want to sign up for either a one-on-one or the group conference, I'm asking that everyone fill out a short survey that will help me make some decisions and see what issues and questions are most on people's minds. I'm gonna do the sign-up in a few steps.

First, everyone will need to fill out the short survey. Takes about 1-2 minutes. You'll include your name, email, and conference preference in it (i.e. one-on-one or group conference). The survey is open until Saturday, July 4 at 6 pm PST

Second, I'll look at those survey responses on Sunday morning, and send those I can another link to a G'sheets spreadsheet by Sunday around 2-3 pm PST. You'll have until Monday at 10:00 am PST to fill in your name in a slot, which will be your one-on-one conference about labor-based grading contracts in your course with me. If you cannot make any of the times, there is always the group conference on Friday, July 10 at 12:30 pm PST. You just need to email me back by Monday at 10 am, letting me know you'll need the zoom info for that group meeting on Friday. If there are seats left, you'll get one. 

Finally, once you've signed up on the conference sign-up sheet, or designated that you are interested in the group conference on the survey, or emailed me that you cannot meet for a one-on-one conference so you want to attend the group conference, I'll send you a zoom calendar invite by email with the zoom info in it by Monday at 5 pm PST. 

So by 5 pm PST on Monday, everyone should have their zoom info and conference time scheduled. The conferences begin on Tuesday. 

Please, if you sign up for a one-on-one conference, know that I'm excited to talk to you, so I'll be really disappointed if you don't show up, or if you come in late. I know, things happen, but try to be extra considerate to me and those who may not have gotten a conference time. If you want to show me a syllabus or something, it would be best to have it in g'doc form. Then you can share the link in our meeting, and it will be easily accessible to both of us. 

If you are a bit early, and I'm not quite done with the last conference, or I'm transitioning from other work to this, please be patient as I'll let you in our zoom meeting as soon as I can. I will try very hard to respect your time as well. 

Maybe Some Prep? 
It may help you to write out your questions, and order them in importance. We may not get to all of them, if you have more than 3-4. Each one-on-one conference can only be 25 minutes long, and I must keep to that strictly. 

If you have time and haven't already done so, you might also look at my last book on labor-based grading contracts, Labor-Based Grading Contracts: Building Equity and Inclusion in the Compassionate Writing Classroom. I might suggest chapter 3 for an overview of my labor-based contract, and chapter 6 that offers about 14 common questions about them that I've tried to address in some comprehensive fashion. If you want to see a selection of my other books, articles, podcast interviews, and recorded talks, you can find them on my Books, Articles & Chapters, and Media pages on this website. 

And here is the survey to start the process. I'm excited to do talk shop with teachers this coming week! Thank you again for your patience, interest, and willingness to keep thinking about antiracist and compassionate ways to assess and grade in your courses! 


  1. This is a very generous idea! I am curious how you (and people who attended office hours) think this went and if you will do it again. Sorry, I'm not on Twitter so this may be something you've responded to over there.

  2. Hi Nikki, it went very well and I got a lot of very positive feedback from folks during and after by email and on Twitter. I'll do it again, but not as many slots. Mostly because school begins and well, you know. Time.

  3. Replies
    1. It went very well. I had a full docket of meetings. Many were attended by several people together too!


Post a Comment