Valuing Equity and Diversity: Considerations to Close Achievements Gaps

Posted on October 30, 2014

The Central Comprehensive Center (C3) and South Central Comprehensive Center (SC3) at the University of Oklahoma are hosting a one-and-a-half day seminar on Valuing Equity and Diversity on Tuesday, October 21 and Wednesday, October 22, 2014.  The seminar will focus on the importance of building a school atmosphere that values equity and diversity for all students.  Participants will share and learn with colleagues about current and emerging research surrounding these issues.  The seminar will promote awareness and understanding of an equity framework to enhance teaching and learning for diverse students.

The audience for this seminar are state education agency (SEA) leadership in the C3 and SC3 Regions in the areas of Curriculum and Instruction, Counseling, Special Education, Homeless, Title I, Migrant, Native American (includes Native Alaskans, Hawaiians, and American Indians) Title III, and Title VII.  The question of how to meet the educational needs of an increasingly diverse student population will be addressed.  Research has shown that cultural, religious, social, and economic patterns of interaction guide the child’s development and become the basis of their identity.  Equity and diversity encompasses among other areas, language, cultural, race, ethnicity, gender, physical/mental ability, sexuality, and age.  Students bring pre-established patterns of behavior, attitudes, perspectives, and expectations to our classrooms.  Although there are significant differences distinctive to every group, and more importantly, distinctive to each individual student, there are many similarities among them as well.  Understanding and valuing students’ individual uniqueness and perspectives will develop the students' capacity to be sensitive, tolerant, and adaptive while learning and preparing to live and work in a diverse and increasingly globalized society.  

C3 and SC3 are committed to offer continued support through online resources, face-to-face meetings, or any other approach available as requested by the SEAs as they provide districts and schools with the necessary support that ensures equity in instruction opportunities for ALL students.  The Equity Assistance Centers that serve the C3 and SC3 regions will be partners for this seminar, including Region VI – IDRA South Central Collaborative for Equity, Region VII – Midwest Equity Assistance Center, and Region VI – IDRA South Central Collaborative for Equity.  The keynote speaker at this seminar will be Dr. Paul Gorski, a leading national expert in equity and diversity issues from the Center for the Advancement of Well-Being and George Mason University.  He is an Associate Professor of Integrative Studies and a Research Fellow.  To learn more about Dr. Gorski, please click here: paulgorski.efoliomn.com/Home

Donna Richardson, Paul Gorski, and Belinda Biscoe Boni
Donna Richardson, Paul Gorski, and Belinda Biscoe Boni