Culturally Responsive Teaching & Learning
The goal of Culturally Responsive Teaching & Learning is to close achievement gaps by adjusting our lenses. According to national educator Sharroky Hollie, being culturally and linguistically responsive begins with understanding its meaning and having consensus about how to name it. Culturally and linguistically responsive teaching and learning speaks to its comprehensiveness and complexity. There is an in-depth focus on culture and language that benefits teachers and learners. The use of the word responsive is strategic and purposeful because it forces a thought process beyond such common monikers as relevance, proficiency, or competency. To be responsive, educators must be willing to validate and affirm students through instruction, which leads to the pedagogical skillset.
Mission of Equity & Diversity
- To promote, develop, and support equitable practices and policies for a safe and inclusive school community system;
- To provide assurance of access, representation, and meaningful participation for all.
What is equity? Equity means that every student is provided the support and resources they individually need to accomplish the same end goal: graduation and college- and career-readiness. The end-goal for all students is the same, but the process to get there differs.
Major function: Transformation of FCPS to systemically address sustainable equitable access and support for all students and their families: a collective pursuit of cultural proficiency.
Why the necessity? The national focus on standardized testing has illuminated the achievement gap between students from diverse backgrounds and the average student. Specifically, students of color perform at lower levels than the average student. Fayette County Public Schools is no different. Thus, it's the district's goal to close the achievement gap among diverse populations of students, especially those of color.
The Equity Lens*
For any policy, program, practice, or decision, consider:
- What marginalized groups are affected/impacted?
- Does the program ignore or worsen existing disparities?
- How have stakeholders been involved? Who are the stakeholders?
- What are the barriers to more equitable outcomes?
- How can negative impacts/barriers be mitigated?
* (adapted from Portland Public Schools)
Who equity benefits:
- from our curriculum decisions?
- from our teacher hiring and assignments?
- from our gifted, honors, and AP programs?
- from our special education and RTI, and RTE programs?
- from our extracurricular activities?
- from our budget decisions?
- from our accountability measures?
- from our learning goals/objectives?
Linton, C. (2011). Equity 101: The Equity Framework. Thousand Oaks, CA. Corwin
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