Why do we keep talking about equity? | The Chalkboard Project

Why do we keep talking about equity?

Wednesday, July 30, 2014 Sue Hildick

We’ve been talking a lot about equity recently. Whether it’s about student achievement and opportunity gaps or about ensuring our teacher workforce is culturally and ethnically diverse, the truth is Chalkboard has been committed to equity in education since its inception. In fact, we’ve had an educational equity policy embedded in our vision statement for several years now. Our vision is to see Oregon’s K-12 public schools among the best in the nation as measured by student achievement and educational equity. Yet, Oregon’s achievement gaps remain stagnant, even while states similar to Oregon in demographics and funding are narrowing theirs. Our CLASS districts are consistently narrowing the poverty gap, but fluctuating in their results along racial lines.

We are determined to align our internal and external resources for greater equity. We especially want to better understand the underpinnings of racial equity. One year ago, Chalkboard staff started down a learning path to build awareness and a shared understanding and analysis of structural racism, and the challenges that deep institutional and societal inequities present to our work. We’ve accomplished quite a few milestones—from completing an organizational assessment to developing a strategic framework and action plan. This has led to Chalkboard staff drafting its first-ever racial equity policy, which was reviewed and adopted by our board earlier this month.

Our policy reflects the core values and principles we have set forth to inform and drive our transformational work on equity, diversity, and inclusion.
These are:

  • Diversity as it drives discovery
  • Collaboration and shared leadership
  • Quality education as a basic human right
  • An inclusive and dynamic workplace
  • Mutual respect and understanding

We recognize that we cannot do this work alone. Chalkboard will invest in partnerships with diverse leaders and community organizations to help us build a better Oregon for our children. We will deepen our relationships with communities of color. And we will promote greater understanding among policymakers that the achievement gap has social and economic implications.

We acknowledge that we will achieve our equity, diversity, and inclusion goals only as we assume individual and collective responsibility. Chalkboard Project is committed to these goals and moves forward with great enthusiasm and engagement.

  • Statements
  • Student Success
  • Equity and Diversity

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