Questions and Answers
Open House Questions
TSD received questions at the in-person Equity Open House on March 31, 2022, and in the online Open House survey that was open until April 20, 2022. District leaders responded below to the questions that were recurring themes.
Frequently Asked Questions and Answers
Definition of Terms
- Culturally responsive and sustaining practices
- “Culturally responsive practices” means incorporating students' diverse cultural backgrounds in the classroom, teaching cultural competence, and uncovering biases in curriculum, assessment, and teaching (Gay, 2000; Ladson-Billings, 1995; Nieto, 2013). “Culturally sustaining practices” means being inclusive and supportive of students’ cultural and linguistic backgrounds to ensure those skills and assets are not lost in their schooling (Paris, 2012) (Educational Equity Policy ADB)
“Educational equity” means a commitment to ensure that each student receives what they need to succeed (Blankstein & Noguera, 2015) by 1) raising the learning outcomes of all students while improving the performance of historically marginalized students; 2) eliminating the disproportionality of which student groups occupy the highest and lowest achievement categories, including rates of graduation, by eliminating barriers to access and opportunity. (Educational Equity Policy ADB)
- A term often used interchangeably with equity-based funding; it is the ability for many small investors and contributors to fund businesses, ideas, projects, campaigns, etc., often via the internet, and receive an equity stake as part of their capital investment (https://cimm-us.org/dictionary/hyper-funding/)
- The schools in the district are subject to all federal and state laws and constitutional provisions prohibiting unlawful discrimination based on a person's actual or perceived characteristics such as but not limited to, race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, religion, creed, national origin, ancestry, immigration/citizenship status, age, marital status, conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth, genetic information, mental or physical disability, need for special education services, or any other protected class in conformance with federal, state, and local law. Non-Discrimination Policy AC
- Walkthrough document
- An observation form that asks users to record evidence of instructional practices such as student engagement, appeal to multiple learning styles, and the classroom environment. The district determines the specific instructional practices (Hanover Research, 2020).
What is the cost?
District leaders examine the cost of strategies. Most strategies are cost-neutral.
Why is this needed? What is the problem?
The problem we seek to address is the persistent inequitable outcomes between groups of students. Examples of outcomes that have been identified in our student data are reading proficiency, math proficiency, attendance, and graduation rates.
What program is being used?
Equity is not a program or curriculum. It is a way that TSD is committed to serving students that maximizes outcomes for each. No paid or packaged program is being used for our Equity Implementation Plan.
How will success be measured?
The Superintendent’s Cabinet determines implementation benchmarks to measure success and progress with input and guidance from the Board of Education and stakeholder groups. Those will be shared with the Board of Education in Fall 2022.
What are the connections between the Equity Implementation Plans and reading, writing, and math?
The Equity Implementation Plans do not include content-specific instructional strategies but rather ways of teaching that maximize learning and success for each student in all content areas. The Curriculum and Learning Design Department oversees the scope and sequence of teaching reading, writing, and math based on Colorado’s Academic Standards: Standards | CDE.
Who is/will be leading this? (Makes decisions; defines terms; runs the program?)
The Equity Implementation Plans received community stakeholder feedback in Spring 2022, including that of the School Board of Education. Leadership for equity is spread across the school district’s system with ongoing communication with the School Board of Education.
What will all these look like in practice?; What are the specific ways, methods, and approaches that will be used to accomplish these strategies?
The Equity Implementation strategies will be outlined in an action plan that includes implementation benchmarks determined by the Superintendent’s Cabinet with input and guidance from the Board of Education.
What are the consequences of implementing the strategies identified by the Equity Implementation Planning Committees? What would these changes mean in our current context for our district?
The strategies identified by the Equity Implementation Planning Committees are research-based and evidence-based best practices that positively impact student outcomes in all academic and behavioral areas.
What kinds of diversities will be included?
TSD will follow the Non-Discrimination Policy AC to ensure that the members of protected class groups are included in our work.
How has data been collected, or will it be collected? What do the current data say?
Data has been collected from February 2019-present. Input has been gathered throughout the process of developing the equity policy, equity framework, and equity implementation plans. The historical document of the TSD Educational Equity Framework includes several examples of that information. Student, staff, and community presentations shared with the Board of Education in May and June 2021 are examples of what the data say about student, family, and staff needs related to equity. Additionally, state assessment and survey data are used to determine progress.
Will any plans or programs be viewable by the public?
The equity implementation plans and strategies were presented to the School Board of Education in June 2022. As plans and programs evolve, updates will be provided.