What’s the real problem? Can you see it?

CIS I-DEA foundation workshop: keynote day 3

This is the e-handout for the Keynote for Day 3 of the CIS Inclusion via Diversity, Equity & Anti-Racism Foundation Workshop held on 17-19 March 2022.

It includes the resources mentioned in the presentation, slide deck, and additional resources.

Poster: Keynote Speaker. What's the real problem? Can you see it? Speaker bio. Dr. Danau Tanu


Racism affects all students. We are all complicit in it. But how? In this keynote, Dr. Danau Tanu challenges us to a paradigm shift that lays bare the way structural racism infiltrates the student experience even in areas that seem unrelated.

She shows how the ‘hidden curriculum’ can obscure the real, underlying issues in areas such as international transitions (including repatriation), classroom engagement, campus social life, academic learning, and so on.

Her keynote will help us see old problems in new ways and be better equipped to support students.


To challenge us to think of old ‘problems’ in new ways by:

  • rethinking the frameworks we use to analyse ‘problems’
  • ensuring fairness in the way use these frameworks or categories
  • understanding that it is okay to address ‘the ugly’ in our hearts
  • understanding that racism affects all students
Image of an iceberg. The tip is above the water surface but most of it is submerged. The tip is labeled 'International mindedness' and the submerged portion is labeled 'hidden curriculum'
The Hidden Curriculum. Adapted from graphics designed by Mifune Takashi at irasutoya.com. Graphics copyright: Mifune Takashi.

Slide deck

The slide deck from the workshop is available in PDF format.

Resources mentioned

The resources mentioned in the keynote address are listed below in order of appearance.

Main text: Growing Up in Transit: The Politics of Belonging at an International SchoolDanau Tanu, 2018. 

Racism in international education. Growing Up in Transit - in paperback poster

Third Culture Kids: Growing Up Among Worlds, 3rd Edition. David Pollock, Dr. Ruth E. Van Reken and Michael Pollock, 2017.

Safe Passage: How mobility affects people & what international schools should do about it. Doug Ota, 2014.

ISC Research: The international school student profile – The 2021 Report

Misunderstood: The Impact of Growing Up Overseas in the 21st Century. Tanya Crossman, 2016. See also www.tanyacrossman.com

‘Third Culture Kids: The Return Home’ by Tim Brantingham in Sandwich Parenting.

Additional resources

TCKs of Asia live forums & podcast.

TCKs of Asia w team profile pics

For more resources, see here.


Someone asked during the live keynote session: ‘What is inspiring you these days?’ A: I’ve been taking a lot of inspiration from this.