If you answered yes to these questions, then Coaching for Educational Equity (CFEE) may be just the seminar for you!
- Are you committed to identifying and eliminating policies, practices, and behaviors that create inequitable school systems?
- Do you find it challenging to facilitate honest and productive dialogue when issues of equity or race are raised in your school community?
- Are you frustrated with the slow progress your school community has made in building bridges across difference, despite your commitment to do so?
- Are you willing to address racism and equity issues on a personal as well as an intellectual level?
To seriously address issues of educational equity requires those who work in education to depart from business as usual. This 5-day residential seminar provides the precious time and space for participants to critically reflect upon what it means to take up equity work in their local context in a thoughtful and proactive manner.
In an equitable society test scores, graduation rates, average incomes, and fair elections would not be pre-determined by race, class, gender, or any other social indicators. Because educational institutions often mirror society’s inequities, schools can reproduce a culture of inequality where many of the assumptions, values, and practices of the dominant culture serve to disadvantage the students of non-dominant cultures and advantage students from dominant cultures.
If we do not develop intentional and meaningful strategies to interrupt the inequitable sorting practices that exist and replace them with equitable practices, relationships, and learning conditions, we will continue to deny children of color and poor children a quality education. We are committed to ending the inequitable practices in our classrooms, schools, and districts and re-inventing these institutions so that each student will achieve success in school and preparation for their future.
While inequity takes many forms in our schools, we will specifically focus on the topic of race in this seminar. Why race? Achievement data often shows race to be a greater predictor of success than any other indicator. Even though it is an issue that dramatically affects the lives and education of children of color in our schools, race seems to be one of the topics we avoid, especially as white practitioners. In fact, many of us were trained not to talk about it or to even notice it. As Clarence Jones (lawyer and speech writer for Martin Luther King Jr.) recently stated, “…the question of race relations still remains what I call the 800 pound gorilla in the living room of all American households. It’s still something that haunts us that makes us uncomfortable…”
This seminar is focused on the presence of race, racism, and white dominant culture in our schools, with the understanding that the skills and awarenesses we gain will translate to other oppressive aspects of American schooling.
By the end of this Seminar, it is our intent that you will have had many opportunities to discover or re-affirm ways to:
- grow a deeper awareness of institutional racism and its effect on learning
- interrupt inequity and oppression in your school,
- build alliances across difference to create a more equitable reality,
- encourage new leaders to emerge, and
- support these new leaders as they reflect on the issues of equity that arise in their lives and work.