Arts Education Symposium on Anti-Racism

November 21, 2020 @ 11:00AM — 2:00PM Eastern Time (US & Canada)

This year, AEMS’s annual Maryland Fine Arts Education Conference is an Arts Education Symposium on Anti-Racism! We are honored to have Dr. Bettina Love, author of "We Want To Do More Than Survive: Abolitionist Teaching" as the Keynote Speaker!

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Join Us!

There are currently no tickets available for this event, but you can still make a donation.


Join us for a day of exciting, insightful, and compelling experiences to deepen your understanding of anti-racism and abolitionist teaching in arts education. In addition to a keynote by award-winning author Dr. Bettina Love, the symposium will include breakouts that can help you apply these abolitionist principles to your discipline and your classroom.

  • Tickets will be available for Maryland Educators ($10) starting 9/30/20
  • Tickets will be available for all other attendees ($20) starting 10/7/20

Event Schedule:

  • 11am: Welcome from AEMS, MSDE, and the Arts Educator Professional Associations
  • 11:15am-12:15pm: Keynote by Dr. Bettina Love
  • 12:15pm: Brief break
  • 12:30pm-2pm: Discipline-specific breakouts (including a breakout for Teaching Artists), facilitated by Maryland arts educators
    • Educators will break out into disciplines and discuss anti-racist instructional strategies.
    • Brief break determined by facilitator
    • BYO lesson plan: participants offer real-life examples that facilitators can discuss.
  • 2:10pm: Adjourn

Prior to the event, participants will be sent a reflection activity to prepare them for meaningful conversations about anti-racism.

About Antiracism/Abolitionist Principles:

About Bettina Love:

Dr. Bettina L. Love is an award-winning author and Associate Professor of Educational Theory & Practice at the University of Georgia. She is one of the field’s most esteemed educational researchers in the areas of how anti-blackness operates in schools, Hip Hop education, and urban education. Her work is also concerned with how teachers and schools working with parents and communities can build communal, civically engaged schools rooted in intersectional social justice for the goal of equitable classrooms.

For her work in the field, in 2016, Dr. Love was named the Nasir Jones Hiphop Fellow at the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University. She is also the creator of the Hip Hop civics curriculum GET FREE. In April of 2017, Dr. Love participated in a one-on-one public lecture with bell hooks focused on the liberatory education practices of Black and Brown children. In 2018, Georgia’s House of Representatives presented Dr. Love with a resolution for her impact on the field of education.

Dr. Love is a sought-after public speaker on a range of topics, including: anti-blackness in schools, Hip Hop education, Black girlhood, queer youth, Hip Hop feminism, art-based education to foster youth civic engagement, and issues of diversity and inclusion. In 2014, she was invited to the White House Research Conference on Girls to discuss her work focused on the lives of Black girls. In addition, she is the inaugural recipient of the Michael F. Adams award (2014) from the University of Georgia. She has also provided commentary for various news outlets including NPR, The Guardian, and the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

She is the author of the books We Want To Do More Than Survive: Abolitionist Teaching and the Pursuit of Educational Freedom and Hip Hop’s Li’l Sistas Speak: Negotiating Hip Hop Identities and Politics in the New South. Her work has appeared in numerous books and journals, including the English Journal, Urban Education, The Urban Review, and Journal of LGBT Youth. In 2017, Dr. Love edited a special issue of the Journal of Lesbian Studies focused on the identities, gender performances, and pedagogical practices of Black and Brown lesbian educators.

About the Facilitators:

Matthew Adelberg (Visual Arts)
Matthew Adelberg is an artist and educator who is deeply passionate about art education as a social justice issue, and works collaboratively with students to develop relevant, emergent curriculum stemming from their lived experiences. To this end, he has presented about art education, equity and social justice nationally. Adelberg received his BFA from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2015, and his MAT in 2016. He is currently the Visual Arts teacher, Fine Arts Department Chair, and Equity Fellow at the Baltimore Polytechnic Institute. Adelberg also serves on the Fine Arts Leadership Team for Baltimore City Schools to help plan and facilitate district wide events, develop culturally relevant k12 sequential curriculum, plan and facilitate Professional Development for district arts teachers, and develop equitable assessment tools.

MeLinda Ford (Music)
MeLinda Ford is passionate about everything that she does. Born in rural Southwestern Virginia music was the saving grace for her. She has spent over two decades as a music educator in Virginia and Maryland. She received her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Music Education from Virginia Union University and Shenandoah Conservatory respectively. After completing her Bachelor’s of Arts degree, MeLinda became a high school band director in King George County Virginia for four years before she moving to Maryland to teach music in Montgomery County. MeLinda has been a general music teacher as well as an instrumental music teacher for MCPS for the last 20 years.

Theatre Action Group (Community Arts)
Theatre Action Group (TAG) utilizes theatre, visual arts, storytelling, music, and dance to incite meaningful dialogue around challenging topics or specific issues. TAG assists groups in developing strategies for self-empowerment, authentic communication, anti-oppression and celebration. We develop unique workshops and interactive performances with communities, institutions, non-profits and small and large groups to achieve specific outcomes.TAG is excited to take our unique style of workshops online, and has been building powerful exercises for an impactful zoom theatre experience!

Camille Gibson (Media Arts)
Camille Gibson is currently an Art Teacher at Golden Ring Middle School. She also serves as Department Chair and Art Lead Teacher for East Zone. In addition, Camille Gibson created a student driven art program called “Art for a Cause”. The program allows her students to use their artistic abilities to address issues that are relevant in their community. Camille Gibson has worked at Golden Ring Middle School for 7 years and has her masters degree in Leadership Teaching in Cultural Proficiency and Post Master Certificate in Administration and Supervision at Notre Dame of Maryland University. Mrs. Gibson philosophy of art education is creating a safe space where students can foster their artistic abilities within an equitable environment and provide an outlet to students to explore various components of the visual arts.

Vanessa Jackson (Dance)
Dr. Vanessa L. Jackson is a Professor of Dance at Coppin State University. She holds an EdD in K-12 Educational Leadership,MFA in Dance Performance and BA in Dance from UMCP where she was a recipient of the Creative and Performing Arts Scholar award (CAPA). She held adjunct dance positions at The Johns Hopkins University Peabody Preparatory, University of Maryland College Park, Towson University, and Chair of the Dance program at The Community College of Baltimore. Vanessa is the Founder and CEO of Mindful Living 4 Live--a mindfulness meditation and movement program elevating the lives of women and children through the science of creative consciousness. It is an honor to serve on the AEMS Higher Education Arts Education Taskforce and this panel of extinguished presenters, and welcome open dialogues about real people and real issues in her session. For more information contact:

Patrice Lawrence (Media Arts)
Patrice Lawrence grounds her service in a commitment to encourage creativity and relationship building. As a Teacher of the Year finalist, curriculum writer, senior teacher leader and media arts instructor, Patrice is PGCPS proud. She graduated from the Prince George's County Public School system and this year marks her twentieth year of service with the school district.

Asia Maxton (Theatre)
Asia (Azya) Maxton is an actress, writer, mother and educator with over twenty years experience teaching from pre-K to college. She received her B.A. in Theatre from Clark Atlanta University, and her M.F.A in Theatre from the University of Louisville with a certificate in African-American Theatre.Her teaching memoir Before I Burn Out: Tales, Trials and Triumphs of a City School teacher was released this month. Currently, she is an adjunct professor of speech and theatre at Coppin State University in Baltimore. Connect with Azya through Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Natovian McLeod (Visual Arts)
Natovian McLeod graduated from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2015 with her BFA in General Fine Arts and her Master of Art in Teaching in 2016. Currently Natovian is the coordinator of MICAs Art and Design College Accelerator Program and an elementary art teacher in Baltimore County Public Schools.

McKinley Wallace (Community Arts)
McKinley Wallace III is a mixed-media painter and muralist whose art depicts strength expounded by the oppressed and an educator dedicated to cultivating people-oriented environments that foster inclusive community building and high-quality learning. He is currently in his second year of graduate school at Maryland Institute College of Art to receive a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degree. His studio work has obtained both local and national attention, including solo and group exhibitions in community spaces and commercial galleries.

Krystal Williams (Music)
Krystal Williams is currently the 14 year Band Director for Baltimore City School at Western High School for Girls. Mrs. Williams matriculated from Morgan State University with a B.A. in Music and also holds a M.A. in Teaching from the College of Notre Dame Maryland. She also is a Curriculum Writer, Music Education Clinician, New Teacher Ambassador all while holding the position of Music Technology Chair for the Maryland Music Educators Association.