About Us


Why We’re Here

Our education system is mired in a crisis of purpose. Despite multiple efforts to improve achievement for all, schools continue to be sites that reproduce and perpetuate the very inequality they have tried to address. Even more concerning, our education system is failing to equip our teachers and students with the values and skills needed to create a more prosperous and hopeful future. Our students deserve better than this. They deserve a more just and equitable world where race, gender, sexuality, class, and ability are not used as barriers that determine the haves and have-nots.


Our Vision

We believe that educators have a crucial role and responsibility to dismantle the barriers our students face in society and in school. As the Critical Educators Collective, we work collaboratively and reflectively to promote the transformative social justice teaching we believe is necessary for creating an education system that is democratic, pro-justice, and liberating for all students.


Our Work

We are a group of educators committed to teaching for social justice in our classrooms and advocating for social justice throughout our education system. To reach the goal of a more democratic, just, and equitable education system, we must critically examine and refine our teaching praxis within the classroom as well as organize within our wider communities.

As members of the Critical Educators Collective, we:

  • teach our students the skills needed to become effective agents of change through our curriculum and instruction.
  • experiment, research, test, and refine emergent social justice teaching practices.
    • share resources, lesson plans, and new approaches to advance best practices in social justice education.
  • support each other as we navigate challenges within our classrooms, schools, and communities.
  • organize for social justice within our schools, communities, and education system.

To achieve our vision and purpose, we organize accessible and regular meetings and workshops and also use a variety of online resources to share and collaborate. The Collective serves a network of educators across the communities in which we serve and live.



The Critical Educators Collective was founded in 2015 by a group of graduate students at Lewis & Clark College’s School of Education. Our work as a collective will continue in the future as we support each other as new educators. Though we are not formally affiliated with Lewis & Clark, we hope to inspire and support future Lewis & Clark education students to continue an active chapter of pre-service teachers. Since 2016, we have expanded the Collective to include educators teaching in the Portland-metro area and beyond. For information about the 2017 Teaching in the Time of Trump Teach-In, hosted at Lincoln High School in Portland, OR on February 11th, click here. 

Spring 2017 Elected Positions

Chair — Sarabeth Leitch

Co-Chair —  Jaydra Johnson

Treasurer — Jake Strickland

The CEC contains three committees: Organizing & Advocacy, Communications & Outreach, and Professional Development.  Learn more and get involved here.  

For more information, please email criticaleducators@gmail.com.