Equity & Inclusion at the Cluster
Vision for the Cluster
At the Cluster, we strive to create an equitable learning community in which every child and family feels a sense of belonging. Our efforts are aligned with the DCPS Equity vision and guided by school leadership and the Peabody and Watkins Equity Team.
The Peabody and Watkins Equity Team, a diverse group of caregivers and staff working to address racism, envisions an equitable, anti-racist school community in which all students, families, and staff:
are welcomed, loved, and valued;
experience a true sense of belonging;
are provided the support they need to thrive.
The Equity Team does this by creating a space for:
participating in open, honest dialogue;
processing identity and developing relationships;
engaging in equitable and representative collaboration;
taking concrete actions to advance educational equity and racial justice.
Peabody Curriculum Extension
Peabody is implementing an Anti-Racism and Anti-Bias curriculum extension in the 2022-2023 school year. Developed by Peabody staff, this work is grounded in Anti-Bias Education for Young Children and Ourselves published by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). This Overview Presentation explains how DCPS' whole-child, anti-racist mission relates to the student experience in early childhood.
The units our team has designed include identity, celebrating diversity, family traditions and customs, fair and unfair, and advocacy. Much of our learning takes place through read alouds and discussions. Below is information on classroom activities and suggestions for extensions at home.
Below are books used during this unit to build students' understanding.
Unit 1: Identity
No matter what you look like or where you come from, all are welcome in our school! We are all different and have something special to share about ourselves and our families. A group of unique people makes a wonderful community like ours!
Click here for more books related to the Identity Unit.
Unit 2: Celebrating Diversity
It is joyous to celebrate all the ways that we are the same and different. Whether it’s the activities we enjoy doing, the foods we eat, the languages we speak at home, how we look, the clothes we wear, our lives at home, or the abilities we have, we can celebrate being who we are and accept others as they are.
Click here for more books related to the Celebrating Diversity Unit.
Unit 4: Advocacy
It is important to give students the tools for learning how to stand up to hurtful and unfair biased behavior based on ANY aspect of social identity (the color of their skin, where their family came from, how they talk, a disability, etc.) whether it is directed at oneself or another person. We must enable students to demonstrate a sense of empowerment and the skills to act, with others or alone, against prejudice and/or discriminatory actions.
The Caregiver Toolkits provide a range of resources to support at home learning and discussion regarding race and bias and are organized around the themes of identity, celebrating diversity, fair versus unfair, and advocacy. Each toolkit provides key vocabulary, recommended books and videos, conversation starters, activities and experiences to do with children, and additional resources for adults.
With support from the Capitol Hill Community Foundation, we have launched a partnership with Kindred. Kindred supports schools and school systems to realize the collective well-being of all students and families. Its vision is that children and families thrive without difference by economic situation, racial or ethnic identity, ability, or other designation. Our partnership over the course of three-to-four years will involve conversations and actions between parents, staff, and school leadership as we tackle issues of racial and economic segregation within our school community.
Year 1: Kindred’s team supported the development of authentic relationships between diverse groups of parents and staff by facilitating small-group dialogues about their backgrounds, race and equity, and goals for their students.
Year 2: Kindred’s team trained and coached parent and staff dialogue participants to lead groups with other parents and staff to reach the broader school community.
Years 3-4: Kindred will support parents and staff to ensure that their school’s parent organizational bodies into equity-driven action groups.
You can learn more about Kindred dialogue groups by watching their recruitment video or by reaching out to Maggie Adams at email@example.com if you have any questions.
These resources may be useful for discussing race and bias with children. If you have additional suggestions for resources, please contact VPEquity@chcspta.org.
Talking to Very Young Children About Race: It’s Necessary Now, More Than Ever (National Center for Pyramid Model Innovations)
How to Talk to Kids About Race: Books and Resources That Can Help
Raising Race-Conscious Children: How to Talk to Kids About Race and Racism
Our Equity Journey
Watkins creates the Achievement Gap Task Force to address racial disparities.
Caregivers and staff form the Cluster Race, Class, and Equity (RCE) Reading Group.
RCE formulates action steps and applies for competitive Kindred partnership.
PTA establishes an Equity and Inclusion committee.
Peabody and Watkins partner with Kindred and begin dialogue groups.
Cluster Equity Team launches with Kindred support.
Peabody launches Anti-Racist, Anti-Bias Curriculum Extension.