At the Tuesday, May 25, Board of Education meeting, a team of administrators, teachers, family members and current and former students rolled out our district’s Strategic Plan for Equity. This was an exciting moment: In some ways it was the culmination of five years of efforts by so many people; and in other ways, we know that the real work is just beginning. As you can see below, the plan has four major areas of focus: Bias Response & an Inclusive & Welcoming School Climate; Professional Learning; Inclusive & Anti-Racist Curriculum and Instruction; and Anti-Bias Recruitment, Hiring & Retention Practices. The plan was developed by a team of 21 stakeholders representing the groups mentioned above, led by our Chief Equity Officer Latisha J. Barnett. As part of this work, they outlined differences in student outcomes by race/ethnicity group in areas such as attendance, suspensions, and participation in AP/college-credit courses. The plan is our commitment to addressing and continuing to report on these and other data points.
As the team described in their presentation on Tuesday, their “Why” is:
Ensure equity of outcomes, regardless of a student’s identity. Ensure that Niskayuna students are prepared to take their place as responsible citizens, who will advocate for equity and justice, as they take their place in the wider world.
I invite you to learn more about the plan by reviewing the graphic below (also available here). Most importantly, I invite you to join us in this work in the days, months and years ahead. There will certainly be opportunities for all members of our school community to be involved.
Cosimo Tangorra, Jr.
Superintendent of Schools