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ADB, Educational Equity

ADB, Educational Equity

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The District commits to ensuring that it will not limit student opportunity, access, and success on the basis of 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.

The Educational Equity policy is designed to address persistent gaps in academic achievement and growth, athletic and activity participation, and disciplinary outcomes for students. Building capacity of district staff to demonstrate equitable practices throughout the system will bring about the conditions and skill sets needed to ensure educational benefit to each of our students.

I. Foundational Belief Statements and Commitments

The District believes that each student is valued and important, has potential to learn and grow, and that we have the responsibility to educate each child in our system while honoring their diversity.

The District is committed to creating and implementing a district organization in which leadership and members of all divisions take responsibility for and are accountable for ensuring that students and staff are provided with what they need to be successful.

The District is committed to further empowering excellent staff to provide culturally responsive and sustaining practices through ongoing training across the system.

The District is committed to providing safe, inclusive, and supportive learning and work environments in which students, staff, families, and community’s diversity are recognized, honored, and respected, thereby creating a strong sense of belonging so that each individual can achieve their goals.

The District believes that families should be welcomed, supported, and engaged in receiving information about programs available to their children and in decision-making.

The District believes that allocating resources equitably will support the narrowing of student opportunity gaps. Adjusting academic, athletic, activity fee, resource and supply structures across the school district will increase access and opportunity to each student.

II. Responsibilities

In order to ensure that district programs and learning environments are in compliance with applicable laws and regulations, the Board directs the superintendent or designee(s) to monitor annually the following areas and to report to the Board the findings related to:

  1. The progress of an equity framework which includes an implementation plan to address all aspects of systemic change related to increasing educational equity in TSD.
    1. The equity framework may include:
      1. Active recruitment, employment, support, and retention of a culturally competent workforce that reflects the diversity of the student body.
      2. Active involvement of students, families, staff, and community members that reflect the diversity of the student body in decision-making processes to inform school-level and district-level decisions, particularly those involving the narrowing of opportunity gaps.
      3. Increase in financial access for each student through equitable resource allocation to schools and equitable student fee, resource and supply structures for education, transportation, activities, and athletics.
      4. Support for high-quality ongoing professional development to engage and empower staff at all levels with the goal of increasing culturally responsive practices and to be practitioners equipped and committed to ensuring educational equity. Some examples include: setting high expectations, providing high-quality learning environments, acknowledging and affirming the rich diversity of their students and their colleagues, being culturally sensitive and responsive, and addressing one’s own biases as well as bias in curriculum, assessment, instruction, and instructional materials.
      5. Data-informed district and school decisions to narrow opportunity gaps by reviewing disaggregated trend data by race/ethnicity, sex, English language development program participation, free and reduced meal status, disability, and any other available identifiers along with any other significant or relevant data.
      6. Provision of information in the home language of families about academic programs as well as extra-curricular and school activities at school and district levels.
  2. District implementation of annual evaluation processes related to equity leadership and specific and attainable annual equity goals.
  3. Elimination of institutional barriers that prevent students from achieving academic success at the same rate as their peers or from being fully prepared for life after TSD.

III. Definitions

For the purposes of this policy, the following terms shall have these meanings:

  1. “Diversity” includes characteristics of persons including, and not limited to the actual or perceived:
    1. Race
    2. Color of skin
    3. Sex
    4. Sexual orientation
    5. Gender identity
    6. Gender expression
    7. Religion
    8. Creed
    9. National origin
    10. Ancestry
    11. Immigration status
    12. Home language
    1. Age
    2. Marital status
    3. Genetic information
    4. Mental or physical ability
    5. Need for special education services
    6. Family structure
    7. Family income
    8. Homelessness or mobility
    9. Veteran status
    10. Any other protected class in conformance with federal, state, and local law
  2. “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.
  3. “Opportunity gaps” refers to the opportunity to learn, access to necessary resources, curriculum opportunities, extra-curricular activities, and highly qualified educators that may exist for some students, but not all.
  4. “Institutional barriers” refers to policy or practice that unintentionally or intentionally keeps one group of students from accessing opportunities for success.
  5. “Culturally responsive practices” means incorporating the diverse cultural backgrounds of students in the classroom, teaching cultural competence, and uncovering biases in curriculum, assessment, and teaching (Gay, 2000; Ladson-Billings, 1995; Nieto, 2013)
  6. “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).

Revision History

  • Adopted: June 17, 2020

Cross references

AC, Nondiscrimination / Equal Opportunity

GBA, Open Hiring/Equal Employment Opportunity

JB, Equal Educational Opportunities