Printed from: http://oln.educationnorthwest.org/event/369
The Civil Rights Movement, past and present, loomed large at the spring Oregon Leadership Network (OLN) conference where more than 250 education leaders from across the state participated in plenary and breakout sessions focused on bringing equity to Oregon’s classrooms. The event took place on April 15 in Salem.
Winston Cornwall, Oregon Department of Education civil rights education specialist, took a personal approach to his opening keynote with stories of discrimination complaints in Oregon schools and his own experiences as an African American man in the state. He noted that outright exclusion of students based on race and other factors is one thing, but when students experience unintentional discrimination it’s more subtle and just as damaging.
Later in the talk, he said that disproportionate discipline in Oregon schools is a civil rights problem that affects, in particular, Native American, Alaska Native, and economically disadvantaged students, and that Oregon schools disproportionately identify special education students based on race. He said that when a civil rights violation takes place, the remedy involves more than making the victim whole and right. “You have to tell the individual, ‘I’m sorry,’” he said.
Joyce Harris, director of the Region X Equity Assistance Center (operated by Education Northwest), took the podium after lunch and gave the audience a pep talk. She told her own story: how, as a child, she had never seen her grandmother cry until news spread of the racially motivated murder of Emmett Till in 1955 and how her grandmother instilled in her the value of education. “I believe education is the best way to continue the work of those who fought for equality through the history of our nation,” she said.
In challenging educators in the audience to think of themselves as civil rights warriors, she said that teachers always need to have their antennas up so that children are not placed in a position where they are treated unfairly. She also described segregation reaching the classroom level even today, saying that “students in the same classroom are having very different experiences.”
The conference kicked off with opening remarks from Rob Saxton, deputy superintendent of the Oregon Department of Education, and OLN Director Rob Larson. Breakout sessions featured a broad range of topics related to equity, from culturally responsive teaching practice to disproportionate discipline to working toward implementation of equity goals.
Civil Rights in Our Schools—I’m Here To Help
Winston Cornwall | Oregon Department of Education
Have you ever receive an incident report about a student in your school or district and wondered what to do? What about an offensive joke or comment in passing from a staff member? Ever been in a staff meeting or with a group of students and teachers and heard something that you know isn’t right but you don’t know what to do about it? Ever see something happen at a school district bus stop and wonder if you have any responsibility? Have you ever wondered when something you observed has “crossed over the line?” Bring your questions and issues to this session and Winston will provide tips, guidance, and tools to help address and/or resolve these issues.
Working Together – Teachers and Students Collaborating in Writing Instruction
Joann Hulquist, Kate Yocum, Julia Ramirez, and Dawn Stephenson | Beaverton School District
Staff at William Walker Elementary School in Beaverton, OR, will present their co-teaching model designed to address the academic and language learning needs of their ELL population. Presenters will share rationale, planning and implementation steps, support to teachers, benefits, and challenges. Participants will learn about William Walker Elementary School’s pilot ESL co-teaching model, including rationale, logistics, implementation, and professional development. General and ESL teachers work together to plan, teach, and analyze instruction that is designed to integrate content and language instruction. This model provides differentiated support and access to grade-level standards without the need to pull ELLs out of the mainstream classroom. Participants will examine the benefits and roadblocks of a co-teaching approach and lessons learned from the presenters’ experience.
The Time Is Now! Changing School Policies and Practices To Eliminate Discipline Disparities
Vicki Nishioka | REL Northwest at Education Northwest
Mark McKechnie | Youth, Rights & Justice
The urgency for schools to eliminate discipline disparities has never been stronger in Oregon and across the nation. Join this interactive session to learn about Oregon’s school discipline requirements that schools must implement by July 2014. Participants will also learn about discipline practices that promote equity for each student. Participants will increase their knowledge of HB 2192 and the policy and practice requirements that need to be in place beginning July 2014. Participants will also increase knowledge of best practices that are associated with lower rates of suspension, especially for students of color. Discussion topics include potential solutions and action steps in OLN districts to eliminate disproportionate use of exclusionary discipline.
Uncle Tom, Banana, Oreo, Coconut, Apple… People of Color, We Need to Talk
Macarre Trayham and Marshall Haskins | Portland Public Schools
Uncle Tom, banana, Oreo, coconut, and apple are derogatory terms used to describe people of color perceived as “acting White.” Whiteness is not just exclusive to White people. Whiteness plays a role with all ethnicities because of how minorities negotiate and navigate dominant culture in order to achieve success and acceptance. The way in which minorities consciously or unconsciously internalize dominant-cultural norms can influence how people of a similar race can see them as a sellout. Participants of color will learn how to identify how the presence and role of whiteness shows up in people of color and how denial can impact their work for racial equity. Participants of color will also be able to identify how Whiteness shows up in their actions, thoughts, and beliefs.
Participants will learn how through identifying their own Whiteness they are better able to interrupt systemic racism. All participants will learn how to effectively plan and explore Whiteness through the use of the Courageous Conversations About Race protocol and Critical Race Theory.
Stoking the Fire: Belief to Action, Another Year of Culturally Relevant Teaching, CARE and Equity at Irvington School
Lisa McCall, Todd Stewart-Rinier, and Regina Sackrider | Portland Public Schools
Collaborative Action Research for Equity (CARE) and Equity Team members from Irvington K–8 in Portland, Oregon, will share their journeys and transformation of implementing culturally relevant teaching while examining policies and practices in their schools through the lens of racial equity. Participants will hear stories and see data illustrating the successes— and challenges—of implementation. It’s a chance to hear about the impact of students’ self-assessment of their learning by examining race as a factor in the achievement gap. Participants will gain an understanding of how a school led by a principal and an Equity Team facilitates professional development through the lens of race and equity. Participants will gain an understanding of how teachers implemented CARE to create equitable academic outcomes for all students and how culturally relevant practices deepen engagement for students of color.
Culturally Responsive Family and Community Engagement
Debbie Ellis | REL Northwest
Deborah Peterson | Portland State University
Several OLN districts have requested additional support in developing culturally responsive family engagement models. This session will share the strategies of five high schools in Oregon in which more than 40 percent of the families are Latino and more than 10 percent are English learners, yet the success of Latino students exceeds the state average and gaps between performance of White and Latino students are low. Teams of teacher leaders and administrators from schools and districts are encouraged to attend together in order to formulate a plan for their building/district. In addition, participants will discover how the OLN Research Alliance will explore family engagement over the coming months—and how districts can be a part of this capacity-building and networking opportunity!
Evaluating and Giving Feedback on Culturally Responsive Teaching
John Lenssen | John Lenssen & Associates
We are learning that it is not the number of times teachers are observed that impacts their practice. Rather, it is the quality of the feedback that teachers receive. This workshop will focus on providing feedback to teachers that focuses on essential elements of culturally responsive teaching. We will access Oregon Standards and multiple frameworks for teacher evaluation in this process. We will also focus on differentiating feedback for teachers based on their understanding and practice around culturally responsive teaching.
Toward a Coherent System of Culturally Responsive Teacher Preparation, Development, Evaluation & Support
Sho Shigeoka | Beaverton School District
Panel of OLN members
We, as OLN members, embrace the importance of culturally responsive practices as they apply to classroom, school, and district decisions. How can OLN collaborate to develop a statewide system to support this work? Join a conversation with OLN districts, colleges/universities, and professional organizations to identify the process necessary for OLN to engage in this work. Participants will be able to identify key elements of culturally responsive practices, define the roles OLN members play to bring those elements to day-to-day practice, and identify next steps to work toward developing a coherent system of culturally responsive teacher development.
School Leaders Supporting Teachers: Reducing Educational Disparities Through School-University Projects
Susan Carlile | Portland State University
This presentation will share four model projects in which PSU partnered with superintendents, principals, and teacher leaders to reduce educational disparities in their schools/districts. The school and district partners will share their project, the impact on educational disparities, and how PSU supported their work. PSU will be selecting district projects for future partnerships and will solicit proposals at the workshop. Participants will analyze how districts used data to reduce educational disparities and developed processes that honor stakeholders while reducing disparities.
Ready, Set, LEAD: Beaverton’s Journey Toward Districtwide Equity Transformation
Carl Mead, Anne Erwin, and Shirley Brock | Beaverton School District
Do you want to know how to use the LEAD Tool™ to lead for equity? Come and learn how Beaverton applies the LEAD Tool to engage in equity transformational work. While we don’t have all the answers, we will share lessons learned, including sample protocols to lead your own organization’s equity learning and leadership teams. Participants will be able to develop an understanding of the process Beaverton has used to engage in organizational change, using the LEAD Tool. They will also participate in a mock SMART goal development session, based on the LEAD Tool’s high-leverage practices.
Absurd Aspirations for ALL: 100% Graduation, 100% Accepted to College, and 100% Paid For!
Randy Trani | Corbett School District
Corbett School District has set three absurd aspirations as part of their “Every Student a Choice” campaign. After a decade’s worth of work the district has made dramatic progress toward these absurd aspirations. Participants will hear how Corbett is working to provide equitable educational experience to ALL students on their way to achieving 100 percent graduation, college acceptance, and college financing.
Toward Actualizing Equity Goals Through Equitable (Not Equal) Resource Allocation
Jeff Rose, Claire Hertz, and Maureen Callahan | Beaverton School District
You know the difference between equity and equality. You also know how hard it is to apply the concept to practice, especially when it pertains to budget decisions. Learn about the importance of collaboration among the Business Office, Teaching & Learning, and Human Resources to make leadership decisions for equity. Participants will enhance their understanding of the process Beaverton has applied to allocate resources with an equity lens, and develop an action plan to start/sustain the process of making budgetary decisions with an equity lens for their own organizations.
“CARE-ing” for Emergent Bilingual Students: Culturally Responsive Practice in Mainstream Classrooms
Van Truong, Greg Wall, and Kehaulani Minzghor | Portland Public Schools
How can you increase engagement and access to learning for Emergent Bilingual students in your classroom, school, and district? Learn how Portland Public Schools utilizes the CARE (Collaborative Action Research for Equity) framework to help mainstream teachers provide culturally responsive instruction to Emergent Bilingual students using four essential domains of culturally responsive pedagogy: relationships, relevance, rigor, and realness. New ELD standards and their connection to Common Core will also be discussed. Participants will have opportunities to connect the CARE framework to classroom practice and will learn about adaptive changes to support Emergent Bilinguals at the district level, at a content specific level, and at a classroom level.
Neighborhood Treasure Hunt for Equitable Practice: Connecting Teachers to the Community Beyond Their School
Jan Carpenter, Velma Johnson, Centáe Richards, and Kathleen Vincent | Marylhurst University
This workshop will provide valuable information about helping teachers develop culturally responsive teaching and family- community connections. The Neighborhood Treasure Hunt workshop explores the project structure, reflective exercises, partnerships, and preliminary results emerging from this important work. Participants will consider novel strategies that enhance their understanding of equitable practice in the communities in which they teach.
Knocking Down Barriers for Diverse Learners
Jon Pede and Elaine Fox | Hillsboro School District
Students face many socially constructed barriers created by the systems designed to help them.
Special education can be one of them. Students identified as needing special education services face barriers in their educational experience. We will share how we are eliminating barriers by changing the system to ensure equity for diverse learners.
Supporting the Cultural Transformation of a School: Nontraditional Interventions for Black & Brown Boys
Dunya Minoo, Chris Williams, Ray Leary, and Ben Keefer | Portland Public Schools
Roles at various levels within an organization are required to support the evolution of a school’s climate. By providing Black male mentors and creating leadership opportunities for kids of color,
George Middle School is beginning to increase student engagement and school pride. Hear how a principal, community leader, and central office staff collaborate to transform a school’s culture.
A Strategy for Diversifying Our Teaching Force in the Short-, Mid-, and Long-Term
Matt Coleman | Springfield Public Schools
Mike Garling | Regional Network Coordinator
One in three students in Oregon’s public schools is a minority. But, just 8 percent of our teachers come from minority populations. Springfield Public School staff and participants in our first each
Oregon cohort will share a strategy for drawing more young people from minority backgrounds into teaching careers. Participants will learn about a three-tiered strategy that provides the greatest potential for eliminating the diversity gap and builds a teaching force that mirrors our student population.