Tamara Fairbanks is the new president of the Newport-Mesa Federation of Teachers.
Located in Orange County, Newport Mesa Unified School District had an enrollment of 20,173 students in 2019-20. Among California school districts, Newport-Mesa is considered relatively affluent, with per-pupil revenues above the state average. While the student body is about 45% Latino and 44% white, more than 80% of the district’s teachers are white. Fairbanks is one of only three Black teachers in the district
In this interview, she talks about what it has been like teach in a district where she is one of only a handful of Black teachers.
She was interviewed by Sandra Asper for the Costa Mesa Brief, a YouTube channel that covers news and events in Costa Mesa, California. We are sharing it here, with permission, because we thought it would be of interest to our readers in light of the critically important issues it raises.
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