Araya Baker

Guest Blogger

Counselor Educator, Suicidologist and Policy Analyst

Los Angeles, California

Araya Baker is a counselor educator, suicidologist, and policy analyst. Baker has published commentary and public scholarship in The New York Times, The Washington Post’s The LilyHuffington PostEducation PostViceBuzzfeed, The Mighty, The Tennessean, and other platforms. Araya earned a master’s in professional counseling from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education and a master’s in human development and psychology from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

RECENT POSTS

Posted July 9, 2021

Tennessee’s Toxic Politics Are Dangerous for LGBTQ Youth

In rural and small-town America, the pervasive dependency on the church to cope with limited outlets and opportunities can deter…

By Araya Baker

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Posted July 29, 2020

This Out and Proud Teacher Could Make History if Elected to the Texas State Board of Education

Michelle Palmer, a longtime Houston community activist and education leader, might soon make history as the first openly LGBTQ+ teacher…

By Araya Baker

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Posted Dec. 5, 2018

5 Tips to Promote Equity for Trans, Gender Variant and Non-Binary Students

A consistent finding in research on LGBTQ+ youth is the disproportionate bullying and victimization faced by trans students (i.e. transgender,…

By Araya Baker

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Posted Oct. 11, 2018

‘Sesame Street’ Just Missed a Big Opportunity to Support the LGBT+ Community

Recently, a whirlwind of controversy swirled around speculation that childhood favorites Bert and Ernie, of “Sesame Street,” might be partners—yes,…

By Araya Baker

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Posted Sep. 14, 2018

We Need to Keep Talking About Serena Williams and the Dignity of Black Children

By now we’ve all seen the headlines after the most recent U.S. Open in which Serena Williams lost to Naomi…

By Araya Baker

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Posted Aug. 3, 2018

What James Baldwin’s Activism Can Teach Schools About Social Justice

Every August 2, I spend nearly the entire day observing the birthday of the late James Baldwin, one of the…

By Araya Baker

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Posted Mar. 27, 2018

Rapper Vic Mensa Says We Need More Therapists in Schools Not Guns

In a recent video with ATTN, rapper Vic Mensa makes the case for combating gun violence in schools with more…

By Araya Baker

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Posted Mar. 20, 2018

How We Can Transform Schools Into Sites of Racial Healing

Students across the nation have joined in solidarity to ignite a long overdue national conversation on gun reform and school…

By Araya Baker

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Posted Jan. 31, 2018

JAY-Z Says We Need More Therapists in Our Schools and He’s Absolutely Right

JAY-Z was the inaugural guest on CNN’s new weekly “The Van Jones Show.” During the 40-minute interview, JAY-Z appeared deeply…

By Araya Baker

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Posted Oct. 11, 2017

Affirming Our LGBTQ+ Educators Is Essential to Fighting Prejudice

I have long since forgiven the eighth-grader who, during my first year as a school counselor, called me a “f-ggot.”…

By Araya Baker

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Posted Jan. 13, 2022

Chicago Isn’t the Only City Putting Politics Over Kids

The politics of education are broken and we are seeing the effects of it play out in real-time.  In Chicago, a stalemate over remote learning…

By Sharif El-Mekki

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Posted Jan. 10, 2022

America Is Losing Sight Of Teachers’ Humanity

Do you remember when teachers were heroes? It was a pretty great week. I got a couple of Amazon gift cards from my students and…

By Garris Landon Stroud

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Posted Jan. 13, 2022

Explained: How to Run for Your Local School Board

School boards (in some states “school committees”) sit at the intersection of civic engagement, local politics, and community service. The school board is a team…

By Brianna Crowley

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