At this year’s Summit, 205 organizations, including NewSchools, committed to enhancing diversity in their leadership ranks. As we reflected on our stories of action, we realized how challenging the work can be and how much we all can benefit from sharing ideas, questions, steps taken and lessons learned with others in the field. We encourage you to browse our and other organization’s stories of action below and hope it will inspire you to submit your own.
Do you have diversity work to share? Let us know using #DiversifyEd! Tweet #DiversifyEd
New Urban Learning Builds College Partnership for TeachersConcerned with the number of African American certified male teachers in our organization, and by the challenges faced by those seeking certification, we partnered with a local university to train and certify our teachers. While we’ve started small, our hope is to continually improve access to certification for more and more teachers of color, including supporting non-traditional individuals interested in education obtain certification.
Teach for America Launched Dream. Rise. Do.Recognizing that African American men make up only 2% of the nation’s teachers, we launched Dream. Rise. Do. (DRD) to bring awareness to the need for more! We launched www.dreamrisedo.org, securing 20K pledges agreeing that 2% is not enough. Through DRD we will increase the number of black male teachers in the nation’s classrooms. We will build a coalition of organizations that will work together to secure more black male teachers.
NewSchools Invests in Fellowship for Race & Equity in Education (FREE)NewSchools invested in Michelle Molitor & her new organization FREE, which was founded to facilitate discussions about the effects of systemic racism on our schools. Michelle believes “the most dangerous conversation about race is the one we’re not having as an education community.” Through FREE, she will work with people and organizations to create learning communities that bridge difference and build confidence in talking about race so as to live, learn, and act in a democracy together.
Ripple Effects Releases New Version of Race/Racism TutorialWe updated our professional development software which helps teachers address race as a social construct, and how racism can be approached as a problem without blame or shame. Our aim is to create a safe space for educators to reflect meaningfully about race and racism and enable them to risk deeper levels of self-honesty, an important first step in creating needed dialogue. Internally, we are actively searching for leaders of color to […]
Charter Board Partners is Building Awareness that Diverse Charter Boards are Better BoardsRaël N. James, CBP’s recruiting director is leading a national awareness effort on board diversity based on our belief that diverse boards are better boards. Board member Michael Pickrum is helping us identify & connect with high profile people of color to encourage them to join boards & support charters. In the past year, our DC board candidate network increased from 26% to 36% people of color, & 54% that we matched to boards were people of color.
Axis Talent Partners Pledge to DiversityAs education practitioners, our team has long been fueled by a deep commitment to diversity & equity, something we had yet to articulate publicly. Inspired by the conversation at Summit 2014, we’ve reflected this in our values statement (link). We’re proud to work with smaller districts & independent charter schools throughout the country identifying and hiring talented leaders of color. We’ll continue introducing our clients to candidates who represent diversity on multiple levels.
NewSchools Changes the Room at Summit 2014We enlisted partner organizations to help identify more black and Latino participants and speakers at Summit. 26% of Summit attendees were people of color–up from 14% in 2013. These new voices changed the conversation in sessions and in the hallways resulting in more courageous conversations about race and class, more action diversifying leadership in ed reform and more efforts across many organizations to strengthen ties with the communities our work touches.
Camelback Ventures Commits to Education Entrepreneurs of ColorNewSchools is supporting Camelback Ventures to help reduce the opportunity gap for education entrepreneurs from underserved communities. Aaron Walker started the Camelback Fellows Program to provide early-stage coaching, connections and capital to social entrepreneurs of color. Camelback’s goal is to provide $5 million in funding to 100 entrepreneurs with 80% sustaining leadership roles over the next five years.
TFA Adjusts Recruiting Policies to Encourage InclusionTeach for America made a deliberate effort to improve both the racial and the socioeconomic diversity of their teaching corps and it shows! This years’ TFA recruits are the most diverse ever with half of the 2014-2015 cohort identifying as people of color and 47% coming from low-income backgrounds. Expanding diversity has built a corps better able to connect with the challenges and experiences of the students they serve.
UP Academy Holland Staff Represents the Students They ServeAt UP Academy Holland in Dorchester, MA, 46% of staff, including the founding principal and director of operations, identify as people of color. Having a staff with such diverse backgrounds and experiences adds tremendous value to their work with students, 83% of whom identify as African American or Latino. With the launch of Holland this fall, UP Education Network now serves more than 2,500 students.
What action are you taking to enhance and improve diversity in your organization? Have an opinion, an idea or a question about what needs to happen to effectively diversify education leadership?
Share with us via twitter with #DiversifyEd, and please include a photo!