Brett Bigham

Blogger

Teacher

Portland, Oregon

Brett Bigham is the 2014 Oregon State Teacher of the Year and a member of the National Network of State Teachers of the Year. He is the only Oregon special education teacher to be named Teacher of the Year and to win the NEA National Award for Teaching Excellence.

He is the creator of Ability Guidebooks, a series of support books for people with autism that give step-by-step directions how to visit cultural landmarks and social events. The books are currently available in 10 countries and four languages. He is president of ORSTOY, the Oregon chapter of the National Network of State Teachers of the Year and serves on the boards of Oregon Safe Schools and Clubfunder.Org.

RECENT POSTS

Posted Feb. 14, 2020

The Moment When You Realize Just How Much You #LoveTeaching

A few years ago I was asked to be a mentor teacher. Not to a new teacher at my school,…

By Brett Bigham

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Posted Dec. 27, 2019

Here’s Why My Heart Grew Three Sizes While Doing Cafeteria Duty

You know that iconic scene in How the Grinch Stole Christmas (the original, not that abominable remake) when the narrator…

By Brett Bigham

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Posted Dec. 23, 2019

May This Next Decade See Fewer School Shootings

WHAT WE GOT WRONG: Guns and violence have been a part of my teaching experience from the beginning. During my first year of teaching, I was a substitute teacher working with an emergency license. I had no training. I had no experience. But after my first day, I was hooked. …

By Brett Bigham

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Posted Oct. 10, 2019

It’s a Dangerous Time to Come Out at School. And That’s Why We Must.

Every single teacher reading this needs to come out today. You straight teachers might be asking yourself, “Who me?”  Yes,…

By Brett Bigham

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Posted Aug. 23, 2019

To Support Your LGBTQ+ Students, Love Them and Give Them Someone to Look Up To

Every student deserves a role model with whom they can relate. For many students, literature and curriculum are resources they…

By Brett Bigham

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Posted Aug. 2, 2019

DeVos Has Dramatically Scaled Back the Protection of LGBTQ Students

This week a report from the Center for American Progress showed that the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil…

By Brett Bigham

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Posted June 6, 2019
Young girl with rainbow paint on her face

I’m One of the Most Well-Known LGBTQ Teachers in the US and I Was Called Out by a Fourth-Grader for Failing to Be Gender Neutral

I messed up today. I messed up, and a nine-year-old called me out. In front of the whole class. That’s…

By Brett Bigham

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Posted Apr. 23, 2019

Teaching Our Students to Save the Planet May Be the Most Important Lesson We Can Teach

Miko Vergun, 17, lives in the Portland, Oregon suburb of Beaverton. She fears she may never be able to visit…

By Brett Bigham

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Posted Mar. 18, 2019

Trump Isn’t Just Cutting the Education Budget, He Wants Schools to Pay for the Wall

Mexico will not pay for Donald Trump’s wall. Your children will. And your children’s children will pay the interest, as…

By Brett Bigham

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Posted Feb. 15, 2019

Here’s Why I’ve Joined Teachers Calling for an End to Detaining Children at Our Border

From the deepest core of my being, I am a teacher against child detention. To choose to separate children from…

By Brett Bigham

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Posted Feb. 25, 2020

Now That Trump Is Abandoning Charter Schools, Democrats Are Free to Champion a Truly Progressive Education Platform

I could be Bernie Sanders’ daughter. After all, my parents were much like him, children of Eastern European Jewish immigrants who settled in New York…

By Laura Waters

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Posted Feb. 24, 2020

Here’s What I Told My Students After ‘Karen From Mike Bloomberg’s Campaign’ Texted Me

Last week, I received a text from “Karen from Mike Bloomberg’s campaign.” She wrote that “with so much at stake, Americans deserve a Democratic candidate…

By Ashley McCall

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Posted Feb. 21, 2020

We’re Teaching Black History Month All Wrong

News flash: We have been celebrating Black History Month all wrong.  Black History Month (originally “Negro History Week”) was started by Carter G. Woodson in…

By ShaRhonda Knott-Dawson

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How does the federal government support our public schools? Find out the ABC’s of ESEA, ESSA and No Child Left Behind →

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