Photo of CUE even in Memorial Hall

Critical Urban Education Speaker Series

The Critical Urban Education (CUE) Speaker Series is a bi-annual event bringing leading national scholars to Montclair State University. CUE provides a forum to develop attendees’ racial and political analysis through a series of lectures and workshops focused on social and cultural issues influencing urban schools and communities. Attendees include Montclair State University graduate students, undergraduate students, and faculty as well as local young people, educators, and community members.

Drs. Tanya Maloney and Bree Picower of the Department of Teaching and Learning coordinate and moderate the CUE speaker series events. The Dean’s Office of the College of Education and Human Services hosts the series. For more information or to contact the CUE coordinators, please email

Prior Events

February 24, 2022

Dr. Carla Shalaby

In her book, Troublemakers: Lessons in Freedom from Young Children at School, Dr. Carla Shalaby posits that classroom management is a curriculum–a series of lessons students learn from us–and invites us to consider: what do we teach now through our classroom management, and what we might want to teach instead? During her talk, she asked attendees to consider the troubling relationships between traditional classroom management approaches and carcerality, and to begin to wonder how intentionally shifting our models of power and authority in the classroom might instead support the teaching and learning of freedom. By seeing our troublemakers as a resource to leverage instead of a problem to solve, she urges us to imagine classrooms as a space in which we might practice the world we want to inhabit by rejecting disposability in favor of the struggle for love, justice, care, and healing.

Purchase the book

October 21, 2021

Critical Urban Education Speaker Series: Dr. Rosa L. Rivera-McCutchen
Radical Care: Leading for Justice in Urban Schools

In her new book Radical Care: Leading for Justice in Urban Schools, Dr. Rivera-McCutchen argues that care, as typically described and enacted, is not sufficient for leading schools, particularly those serving Black and Latinx children. Instead, school leaders need to embrace radical care. During her talk, Dr. Rivera-McCutchen outlined the five components of radical care—adopting an antiracist stance, cultivating authentic relationships, believing in students’ and teachers’ capacity for excellence, leveraging power strategically, and embracing a spirit of radical hope—while sharing vignettes from her personal experiences and research that exemplify each of the components. Calling for educators to thoughtfully challenge existing structures that reproduce inequality, Radical Care offers a much-needed framework that will guide practice with a sense of urgency and a spirit of hope.

February 4, 2021

Critical Urban Education Speaker Series: Black Lives Matter in Schools Event
Presented Jamila Lyiscott and Young People from Newark: Vision-Driven Justice

Inspired by Dr. J’s TED Talk, 2053, this session will move beyond what it means to fight against social inequities by embracing powerful vision and action around what we are fighting for. Framed by what she has conceptualized as Vision-Driven Justice, Dr. J will share key principles of this orientation in conversation with youth who have been working on their visions for social change.

October 14, 2020 

Teachers as Deputies? Confronting ableism, racism, and linguicism, a conversation between Subini Annamma and Maria Cioé-Peña.

June 1, 2020 from 3:30-5:30 pm

Healing America’s Racial Divisions in the Age of Coronavirus: A conversation with Dr. Sean Ginwright featuring Drs. Farima Pour-Khorshid and Christina Villarreal

This event featured a closing performance with Lauren Adams of Sol Development.

February 17, 2020

We Want to Do More Than Survive: A Book Talk with Dr. Bettina Love

This event featured a curriculum fair with residents in MSU’s Newark Teacher Project

March 28, 2019

Language, Literacy, and Ethnic Studies: Mobilizing Insurgent Histories for More Dignified Futures: An Evening with Dr. Cati V. de los Rios

This event featured a local mariachi band.

February 21, 2019

Queering Sexy B(l)ack: Queer Youth and Pedagogies of Sexual Agency: An Evening with Dr. Ed Brockenbrough 

This event featured youth poets from The Loud Project.

April 18, 2018

Critical Urban Education Summit, a day-long professional development event for urban educators with nine guest speakers

January 25, 2018

We All Belong: A Lecture with Dr. Ariana Mangual Figueroa

This event featured a resource fair with organizations across Northern New Jersey.

March 23, 2017

Born Out of Struggle: A Book Talk with Dr. David Stovall 

This event featured a youth poet from Arts High School in Newark, NJ.