Equity & Inclusion Assessment

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Equity and Inclusion Assessment

Over the years, we have found that adults and young people have very different experiences of school climate and experiences. Unfortunately, the ways that members of a school community experience academics, policies, hallway interactions, getting to and from school, lunch, sports and other extra-curriculars, and more has a lot to do with identity. We have had a great deal of success with a listening-based and relational process for learning more about school culture. These sessions support all members of the school community to share their experiences and provide the opportunity for leaders to tend to concerns and challenges that get in the way of student belonging, emotional well-being, and academic excellence.

The methods below for gathering and assessing data are highly customizable to the needs and preferences of each community.

Team of adults collaborating around a table

Custom School Climate Survey

Based on the findings from the Listening Sessions, we can work with your equity team or building/district leadership to determine further assessment activities that would aid in the understanding and monitoring of and climate issues affecting student and family engagement and the learning environment. If appropriate, the Listening Sessions will help in the design of surveys for families, students, and staff to get at essential issues that arise in the earlier phase (listening and reflection sessions).

  • Design and administer climate and equity surveys for students, educators/staff, and guardians
  • Analyze data and prepare findings for reflection and dissemination to stakeholder groups
  • Facilitate data use/reflection session with equity team or building/district leadership

Listening Sessions for Equity

Listening sessions can be conducted in-person or using Zoom. We can accommodate large groups when working remotely. Our process includes welcoming participants, sharing guidelines and details about the process, and then creating breakout sessions for smaller groups of participants to dialogue and make notes about a structured set of questions. After the small group sessions, the participants return to the large group and representatives from small groups share highlights or questions that came out of their dialogue. CES provides an analysis of the listening sessions and form submissions that can be shared back with the community.

Here is an example process:

Listening Sessions for Educators (2 sessions)

  • Tuesday evening session (1.5 hours)
  • Thursday evening (1.5 hours)
  • An option to submit information via Google Form will be available

Listening Session for Administrators (1-2 Sessions)

  • During monthly leadership team meeting
  • An option to submit information via Google Form will be available

Listening Sessions for Students (3 sessions)

  • Elementary (story-based format) (1 hour)
  • Middle School (1.5 hours)
  • High School (1.5 hours)
  • An option to submit information via Google Form will be available

Listening Session for Family Members / Guardians (2 sessions)

  • Evening session (1.5 hours)
  • Lunch time session (1.5 hours)
  • An option to submit information via Google Form will be available

Listening Session for the Community, in collaboration with School Committee (1.5 hours)

  • An option to submit information via Google Form will be available

Debrief & Planning Meeting (1.5 hours)

  • CES will provide an analysis of the listening session and form submissions that can be shared back with the community
  • We will debrief the listening session and discuss recommendations and possible next steps

Street Data Focused Equity Audit

Here is an example of what a possible full equity audit process could look like. This process is customizable and responsive to the needs, issues, and assets in each community.

Drawn from a foundation of practices from Safir & Dugan’s (2021) Street Data, each street data-focused equity audit is a unique process, designed through a collaboration with your district’s leadership team. The process itself is healing rather than transactional or extractive. Data sources can include satellite, map, and street data. Our team will provide a report outlining themes, challenges, and opportunities with specific recommendations to guide our work.

Satellite Data Map Data Street Data
  • Attendance rates
  • Office referral rates
  • Family engagement
  • Academic assessments
  • Demographics
  • Student performance
  • Curriculum reviews
  • Policy & culture reviews
  • Surveys of students, caregivers, and staff
  • Listening sessions
  • Ethnographies
  • Classroom scans
  • Student-led community walks

Listening sessions with Students, Faculty & Staff, and Families

  1. Organize listening sessions that center the voices and experiences of the most disenfranchised in the school community
  2. Provide empowering questions that support centering the internal and cultural wealth of disenfranchised students and families
  3. Summarize themes and lessons and integrate with what we’ve learned so far – generate recommendations and direction for leadership and faculty/staff inquiry
  4. Identify missing perspectives and strategize further engagement

Academic leadership development Ten three-hour sessions

  1. Reflect on curricular, pedagogical, grading and assessment practice with an equity lens
  2. Support a continuous learning model for iterative improvements
  3. Support integration of the new deans into the leadership team and strategic planning
  4. These sessions will be designed as we go and will be based on the equity audit and evolving needs of your team. 

Equity learning & instructional rounds 4 full-days spread out over the year

  1. Facilitate an intergenerational team to co-create observation and analysis tools based on Street Data practices. 
  2. Observe at least three classrooms and other school settings as a team.
  3. Debrief together, analyzing the data for opportunities and use in designing change initiatives. 

Workshops for the leadership team Three three-hour sessions 

  1. Launching our equity journey together
    1. Identifying the big buckets of equity
    2. Establishing common language
    3. What are the changes we can make right now?
  2. Framing the work around learning, listening, and leadership
    1. Toolkit for when conflict comes to the school committee
    2. The power of collective public learning
    3. Representing constituent interests with a focus on unity
  3. Establishing relational culture
    1. Strengthening connections, trust, and empathy
    2. Making values explicit
    3. The essential role of relationships

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