Equity Outreach Initiatives
Equity Outreach Initiatives at Michigan State University aims to increase individuals’ and organizations’ capacity to implement equitable policies, procedures, and classroom and organizational practices for meeting the academic and social needs of a diverse PreK-21 student body and workforce. Our purpose is to provide professional education that assists educators, community organizations and corporations in creating and sustaining equitable communities by centering issues of race, culture, power and privilege in learning and work environments. Stakeholders receive instruction from Michigan State University experts who have in-depth experience connecting research and practice in these areas.
Equity Outreach Initiatives is led by Dorinda Carter Andrews, who is nationally known for her research on issues affecting the academic performance of students of color in K-12 education. She has shared her expertise as a consultant to many school districts and higher education institutions.
What We Do
Participants examine issues of culture, power and privilege to promote sustainable change in their school communities and organizations through:
- Professional education on culturally responsive leadership and instructional practices
- Connecting research to practice (i.e. praxis) for PreK-21 educational leaders, staff, and teachers
- Professional education for developing and sustaining diverse and inclusive work environments
Who We Serve
- PreK-12 administrators, practitioners, and staff
- Higher education faculty, administrators, and staff
- Community organizations
Our Definition of Equity
We define equity as a measure of fairness and justice by meeting the needs of individuals and groups. Educational equity, then, is achieved through assessing needs and implementing policies, practice, and programs that eliminate barriers to success for students of historically and traditionally marginalized groups (e.g., race, ethnicity, gender, class, ability, religion, sexuality). Similarly, achieving workplace equity requires assessing needs and implementing policies, practices and programs that eliminate barriers for employees to have similar access to career opportunities.
Dorinda Carter Andrews shares some of the ongoing work and professional development opportunities at Michigan State University, including explaining more about the new Pursuing Educational Justice Series beginning in 2018.
- Examining stereotypes and assumptions about culturally diverse individuals, teaching, and learning
- Examining one’s social positionality and how it informs beliefs, relationships, and behaviors in work settings
- Understanding how power, privilege, and oppression shape relationships, academic outcomes, and workplace experiences
BRIDGING THEORY AND PRACTICE
- Helping educators and administrators use educational theory and research to inform classroom practice and school leadership
- Exploring research-based practices for affirming and inclusive learning and work environments
- Utilizing educational research to inform policymaking in educational and work environments
- Students’ equal access to educational opportunities
- Policies, procedures, and practices that prioritize being culturally affirming, responsive and inclusive in learning and work environments
- Person-based, not outcomes-based; A focus on meeting individuals’ needs is primary