Tag: diversity in education

New York University Study Shows Diversity in Schools Has Positive Impact on Student Achievement

(image via steinhardt.nyu.edu)

via jbhe.com

A new report by the Metropolitan Center for Research on Equity and the Transformation of Schools at New York University finds that there is an academic advantage for students who go to diverse schools. Researchers compared demographic information on the student bodies at New York City public schools with results on achievement tests and graduation rates.

The researchers found that there was a modest benefit for students attending the most diverse schools – those that were between 50 and 75 percent Black and Hispanic. (Least diverse schools were those that were more than 75 percent Black or Hispanic or those that were more than 50 percent White). Third and eighth grade students at the most diverse schools outperformed students attending the city’s least diverse schools on standardized tests in mathematics and English. Students at the most diverse high schools had slightly higher graduation rates than students at the least diverse high schools.

The results also showed that the benefits of diversity are smaller for younger children than is the case for older students. This, the authors conclude, provides evidence of the long-term benefits of greater school diversity.

David E. Kirkland, the lead author of the report, said that “the academic achievement and high school graduation evidence that we analyzed suggests that increasing diversity can increase equity in New York City schools and significantly decrease gaps in some student outcomes such as high school graduation. Thus, plans to stimulate diversity in New York City schools can pay off for the City’s most vulnerable students.”

The full report, Separate But Unequal: A Comparison of Unequal Outcomes in New York City’s Most and Least Diverse Schools, may be downloaded by clicking here.

Brown University Pledges $100 Million to Address Campus Racism

Students held a Blackout Rally on the campus of Brown University on November 12, 2015. (Colorlines screenshot of Brown Daily Herald video, taken November 23, 2015.)

Brown University is hoping a new plan will help the Providence, Rhode Island, school create a more inclusive environment for its 8,800+ students. On Friday, president Christina H. Paxson announced that the school will invest $100 million dollars over the next decade toward meeting the goals in her new plan, called, “Pathways to Diversity and Inclusion: An Action Plan for Brown University.”

The actions in the plan—which is meant to address diversity and racism on campus—are organized around four pillars: Creating an inclusive learning environment, building and supporting a diverse community, creating pathways for knowledge and success, and creating accountability measures. Paxson posted the plan online as a working document and asked students, faculty and staff to review and give feedback between now and December 4. Then the document will be modified to take into account the input and a final version of the plan will be released before the semester is over.

Elements of Paxon’s proposal include:

  • Doubling emergency funds for low-income students for health insurance, trips home for family emergencies, laptops and books, and access to dining and housing for those who remain on campus during school breaks.
  • Hiring a dean dedicated to supporting first generation and low-income students.
  • Orientation for new faculty and staff will include training and awareness workshops around issues of race/racism, gender/sexism, sexual and gender identity, ability, and the intersectionalities across these areas.
  • Additional diversity and sensitivity training for the Department of Public Safety. 
  • Establishing a committee on curriculum changes.
  • Expanding the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America and the Center for Slavery and Justice and creating an initiative on Native American and Indigenous peoples.

The plan comes days after a November 12 demonstration where hundreds of students gathered at a solidarity rally to talk about their experiences with racism at Brown. Watch a video of the Blackout Rally below.

article by Kenrya Rankin via colorlines.com

Multi-Cultural Manhattan School Teaches Youths the Value of Inclusiveness, Democracy, Justice & Freedom

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Ideal School of Manhattan administrators (l-r) Angela Bergeson, Head of School; David Byrnes, director of institutional equity, and Michelle Smith, school co-founder watch second-graders at work on a Civil Rights Museum project

A Civil Rights museum like no other is going to pop up in Manhattan later this week.  This one is meant to change the future.  Students at the Ideal School of Manhattan were busy constructing exhibits for the museum, a yearly event at the seven-year-old, independent K-to-eighth grade school.

Head of School Angela Bergeson said the museum started out as a yearly school assembly on civil rights, but became so popular that “we decided to devote the whole morning to the museum so that families could go room to room and see all the curriculum pieces, the writing, readings and plays.”

Each grade in the school is assigned an iconic figure from the Civil Rights or non-violence movements, along with an associated word around which the students create exhibits.

Continue reading “Multi-Cultural Manhattan School Teaches Youths the Value of Inclusiveness, Democracy, Justice & Freedom”

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