Eradicate institutional racism and inequities through social justice, promoting the emotional development of staff and students, and embracing diverse perspectives.
- WCASD Equity Mission
Equity History and Introduction
Realizing the effects of systemic and structural institutional biases on historically marginalized groups, in 2007, the WCASD began working to provide training for all district employees. The main purpose of the workshops was to “deinstitutionalize racism and eliminate achievement disparities.” After investing in over a decade of training, there was a sense of urgency to analyze the impact of the antiracist workshops and provide a thorough analysis of WCASD equity policy, access, and opportunity to academic achievement for students across the district.
In January 2020, at the bequest of Dr. James Scanlon, previous superintendent of WCASD, the first educational equity audit was completed. Educational equity is grounded in the tenets of justice, fairness, to ensure the correct resources are allocated to each student. Thereby all children are afforded what they need to achieve academic success. Leading the Quality Review was Dr. Robert Jarvis, Director of Delaware Valley Consortium for Excellence and Equity (DVCEE) and Penn Coalition for Educational Equity in the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania.
The DVCEE’s evaluation took a two-pronged approach. The first focused on five domains for achieving educational equity: (1) assessment data and measures of disproportionality (2) recruitment and retention of faculty and staff of color (2) defining equity for WCASD (4) curriculum and organization, (5) parent and community connections with marginalized groups. Secondly, six focused inquiry questions were presented to WCASD District Equity Leadership Team (DELT) that consists of administrators and educators from building equity teams: (1) holistic practices (2) equitable practices and inclusive school culture, (3) tracking, ability grouping, and replacement decision, (4) impact of institutional racism and implicit bias, (5) voices of historically marginalized students and families, (6) professionally development on culturally relevant teaching.
The DVCEE commends the district’s dedication to supporting all students and outlines key findings and recommendations. Central to the concern is for equity to become the lens through which WCASD views the world and undergirds all decision making. To provide a coherency in this document, the DVCEE recommendations are paired with each of the five strategic plan goals. The report details the recommendations that have been adapted; recommendations that are committed to future action, and recommendations that have not yet been considered for future actions.
- Teach an inclusive curriculum that teaches anti-racism, celebrates differences, promotes understanding, and seeks multiple perspectives.
- Promote a positive school climate in which students feel safe, respected, and appreciated.
- Provide on-going professional development to all staff in all aspects of equity.
- Engage staff, students, parents, and community members in our work.
- Provide equitable access to district programming.