District Plan Aims to Identify and Address Inequities
Plan provides focus for providing inclusive and engaging instruction for all students
In the wake of heightened racial tensions across the nation, Campbell Union School District leaders responded with efforts to sharpen their focus on building and nurturing an inclusive and equitable school system.
“We are committed to promoting a positive learning experience for all students,” said District Superintendent Shelly Viramontez. “Our Anti-bias/Anti-racism Plan, developed by a diverse employee committee, outlines the work ahead of us to continuously improve. It will help us be intentional about providing instruction that is inclusive and engaging for all students, especially those historically marginalized.”
The plan was presented to the Governing Board last summer and includes an anti-racism statement that begins with the following definition:
“Racism is systemic oppression that is conscious or unconscious, intentional or unintentional grounded in racial prejudices designed to reinforce the superiority of one race over another by an individual or group. In Campbell, we realize that racism is dehumanizing to everyone it touches.”
“The District has done some work in the past with different consultants,” said Whitney Holton, Assistant Superintendent of Instructional Services. “The problem with that work was that it wasn’t systematized. So we set out with some clear goals in mind as we engaged in year one of this important work.” The goals are:
- Increase the racial literacy among the district’s leadership and instructional service team;
- Normalize conversations about race, bias and racism; and
- Understand how the system may be contributing to inequity and injustice for groups of people.
The plan marks a significant step forward in identifying and disrupting institutional racism.
In year two of this work, the district will continue with the same goals above, and expand them beyond the district leadership and instructional team to include teachers and other staff. Through surveys, focus groups and empathy interviews with targeted students, the district also will engage the untapped voices of students, staff and families in order to learn how to better meet the needs of all students.
“Each school will be engaging in a pathway of learning to increase racial literacy and deepen our understanding of the students we serve,” Holton said.
More information about the district’s work to promote anti-racism in its system will be provided in future news articles. Click here to see the district’s full Anti-racism statement.