The promise of public education is for every child to succeed in school and life. To realize this promise, every child must be given resources, supports, and interventions based on his or her needs. The nation's school boards are uniquely positioned to fulfill this promise to all students, which is why NSBA is committed to educational equity for all children in public schools.

As the concept of equity can mean different things to different people, NSBA, its Board of Directors and staff embarked on a journey to define the concept of educational equity. Here is the product of this journey:

"We affirm in our actions that each student can, will, and shall learn. We recognize that based on factors including but not limited to disability, race, ethnicity, and socio-economic status, students are deprived of equitable educational opportunities. Educational equity is the intentional allocation of resources, instruction, and opportunities according to need, requiring that discriminatory practices, prejudices, and beliefs be identified and eradicated."

 

 

DIRE

NSBA’s Dismantling Institutional Racism in Education (DIRE) initiative addresses the continued racial disparities in school systems and is dedicated to understanding and recognizing the root causes of barriers to equitable educational outcomes for each child. It supports NSBA staff, the board of directors, and state association members with tools, training, and information so school boards can remove barriers to underserved students.

 

 

NSBA’s Equity Councils

NSBA has four councils that represent school board members in districts with underserved students. The councils—the National American Indian/Alaska Native Council of School Board Members (AIAN), the National Black Council of School Board Members (NBC), the Council of Urban Boards of Education (CUBE), and the National Hispanic Council (NHC)—have been working for years to ensure that school board members both understand and are equipped to support the unique needs of historically disadvantaged children.

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NSBA in the News

Black, Hispanic, and Low-Income Students Are Falling Behind in Math and Reading During the Pandemic | Parents (Dec. 2020)

NSBA Chief Transformation Officer Verjeana McCotter-Jacobs, Esq., discusses how inequities have long existed in education and how the homework gap must be addressed to help our underserved students.

U.S. schools revamp curricula in response to Black Lives Matter | Reuters (Aug. 2020)

NSBA Executive Director and CEO Anna Maria Chávez highlights the increase in requests from state associations for advice on equity-related education materials.

Teachers are reinventing how Black history, anti-racism are taught in schools as system falls short | Good Morning America (June 2020)

NSBA Executive Director and CEO Anna Maria Chávez and NSBA Chief Transformation Officer Verjeana McCotter-Jacobs, Esq., discuss the decisions that education leaders, including school board members, must make regarding curriculum and policy changes.

Resources

 

Events and Programming

Stories

a black male teacher stands near his desk and smiles at the camera

Diverse Teachers Matter

In the second installment of the DIRE Racism in School Series, ASBJ explores how districts across the country are developing a racially diverse workforce through grow your own programs, strategic partnerships, and other initiatives.

a student with a mask stands in a school hallway

New Year’s resolution for equity

2020-21 Chair of the CUBE Steering Committee Jacinto Ramos Jr. reflects on 2020 and encourages his fellow school board members to recommit themselves to educational equity in 2021.

a small girl draws while laying down

Equity Lens

Highline Public Schools Superintendent Susan Enfield knows that “how we talk to, with, and about our children matters.” A look into the district’s policies shows what the school board-approved equity lens looks like in practice.

a silhouette of general lee's statue

The Past is Our Present

Education leaders across the country, including two former National Teachers of the Year, are rethinking how they teach U.S. history, incorporating relevant lessons and encouraging students to think critically.

a student with smiles at his desk

Who Tells Your Story

Former Superintendent of the Pittsburgh Public Schools Linda S. Lane has been leading an effort since 2007 to encourage the College Board to offer an Advanced Placement Black History class. Currently, the College Board offers 38 courses.

a native american girl with her hands clasped together smiles

The Condition of Native American Students

Using the recently released The Condition of Education 2020 report, NSBA’s Senior Research Analyst Jinghong examines educational trends for American Indian and Alaska Native students, who make up 1 percent of the student population.

a picture from a black lives matter protest

The Time Is Now

The recent Black Lives Matter protests have prompted schools to have frank discussions about racism’s presence in education, from discipline practices to opportunity gaps.

A graded test with answers circled in and a pencil.

Accurate and Equitable Grading

Former district administrator Joe Feldman explains how traditional grading systems perpetuate inequities while also offering school board leaders practical tips to move towards more equitable grading processes.

NSBA News

a girl, with her back toward the camera, raises her hand during remote learning

NSBA Asks Federal Communications Commission to Close Remote Learning Gap

A coalition of education advocates, including NSBA, petitioned the Federal Communications Commission to close the remote learning gap for the estimated 15-16 million students who lack home internet access.

black and white photo of the supreme court

U.S. Supreme Court LGBTQ Ruling Statement

In response to the June 15, U.S. Supreme Court ruling that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, also applies to gay and transgender individuals, NSBA Executive Director & CEO Anna Maria Chávez issued the following statement.

The marble columns of the Supreme Court of the United States

NSBA Statement in Response to U.S. Supreme Court DACA Decision

In response to the June 18, U.S. Supreme Court decision on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), NSBA's representatives issued statements applauding the ruling.

magna awards logo

Three School Districts Earn Top Honors in 2020 Magna Awards for Equity Programs

The 26th annual Magna Awards recognizes Fremont County School District #6, Pavillion, Wyoming; Liberty Public Schools Liberty, Missouri; and Moreno Valley Unified School District, Moreno Valley, California, as the grand-prize winners for their work breaking down barriers for underserved students.

To learn more about how NSBA is calling attention to educational equity, check out NSBA Now! Leveling the Playing Field and our Equity Spotlight.