Social Justice and Equity at CES
We understand that all forms of oppression are damaging. As we at CES set our sights on understanding and taking action together to challenge racism and support equity, we also commit to making our work intersectional by taking on sexism, classism, heterosexism, youth oppression, transgender oppression, religious oppression, ableism, sizeism, and more.
We are doing this work pro-actively and purposefully, with the intent of positive outcomes, and because we need to. In doing so, we are building capacity to support and assist schools, and districts responding to their educators’ and students’ needs with an increased and intentional focus on matters of bias, social justice, and equity.
As an organization, we have adopted and committed to the following values to guide our work.
A Culture of Community and Care:
We will look out for and support each other, celebrate each other’s successes and grieve each other’s losses. We will live out an ethic of community care, learn from mistakes, and be challenged to do better.
We will foster speech and discourse, formal and informal, that promotes equity, justice, and understanding.
Equity and Inclusion:
We will work to eliminate racism and other injustice and oppression, and promote inclusion and equity at CES and in our community by identifying and dismantling all forms of social oppression.
Our vision of social justice is intersectional and means working to transform all types of oppression, including racism, ableism, sexism, heterosexism, classism, adultism, ageism, transgender oppression, and religious oppression.
Self-awareness and Growth:
We will continually reflect on our own cultures and identities, and how they relate to or allocate power and privilege; and we will learn about and partner with others to challenge our own biases.
We will make a personal commitment to growth toward equity, inclusion, and a community of care; and know that learning happens when we commit to being brave.
Action and Transformation:
We will take action, speak up, and propose solutions when we see oppression or discrimination; knowing that saying nothing means colluding with oppression. We strive to decolonize teaching practices, learning methods, and curricula through the accurate inclusion of the voices of people and cultures most impacted by white-supremacist narratives.
We will be willing to make mistakes, and learn from both our mistakes and successes, in order to grow.
The Collaborative for Educational Services acknowledges that its offices and many of the locations in which it operates have been built and maintained on unceded land belonging to the Pocumtuc Nation. Our intent is to carry out our work in ways that recognize and honor our region’s history. We hope to participate in the restoration of a broader, more inclusive, and more accurate narrative of our shared past, and to do so with awareness and humility of the deep injustices that we all remain connected to and often benefit from in the form of public and private ownership of the lands and waterways of Massachusetts.
The Collaborative for Educational Services also acknowledges that our current strategic plan was developed within the context of the very systems and structures it was designed to change. As such, this plan cannot represent a final landing place for our thinking, behaving, and being. Rather, we must view this plan as a concerted effort on the part of our organization to take a step away from colonialism and white supremacy culture. This, like all worthwhile planning processes, is part of an ongoing evolution. A significant aspect of the evolutionary process represented by the work outlined in this plan is from ways of thinking, behaving, and being that have caused immeasurable harm to our planet and its people, and towards ways of thinking, behaving, and being that will heal our planet, liberate its people, and facilitate joy and wholeness.
Staff Training and Support
To learn more about equity-focused consulting for schools and other organizations, click here to visit our Social Justice and Equity Consulting page.