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​ISBE is committed to equity – in our agency, in our board, in our school districts and classrooms. As we state in our Strategic Plan, “Illinois has an urgent and collective responsibility to achieve educational equity by ensuring that all policies, programs, and practices affirm the strengths that each and every child brings within their diverse backgrounds and life experiences, and by delivering the comprehensive supports, programs, and educational opportunities they need to succeed.”

Above all, the Strategic Plan offers this concise definition of these goals: “Equity means having high expectations for every learner and providing supports and resources so each learner can meet those expectations.”
The Plan recognizes that, to reach those goals, we will need both internal and external tools. Therefore, we have developed an equity impact analysis tool for agency staff to use to guide all decisions and communications, as well as a data-driven Equity Journey Continuum that each Illinois school district will use to support their equity journey.

 Equity Resources

C​oming Soon!

 Equity Hero Flyers

 Equity Impact Analysis Tool (EIAT)

 Equity Journey Continuum (EJC)

 The draft continuum was presented to Board members for their feedback. A communication plan will be developed to facilitate a rollout of the pilot to the field.​

 Internal ISBE Book Study

Why a Book Study: Generally, book study group participants seek transformation versus information.  Participants want to make what they study not only something they understand, but something they use in their everyday lives or work. A book study group acts as a bridge, helping people move from passive to active learning. Collaboration among peers is a powerful experience.  Shared expertise and opinions of others heighten the reading experience and at the same time, deepens the insight and adds enduring value that may enlighten and inform our lives and our work.

Current Book: Courageous Conversations About Race: A Field Guide for Achieving Equity in Schools, Second Edition, by Glenn E. Singleton

Start Date: January 2021

ISBE Book Study facilitators have been utilizing the Facilitator’s Guide to Courageous Conversations About Race: A Field Guide on the Equity-Info-Resources, by Glenn E. Singleton and Curtis Linton. This chapter-by-chapter guide explains how to engage educators in discussions about personal agendas, multiple racial perspectives, closing the racial achievement gap, and extending their professional learning. Trainers will also find practical features, including

  • Implementing exercises
  • Prompts, language, and tools that support profound discussion
  • Activities and checklists for administrators
  • Action steps for creating an equity team
Highlights for the facilitator include

  • Activities for small or large groups
  • Discussion and journaling prompts
  • Key sources for supplemental reading
  • Sample workshop agendas for half-day, one-day, or two- to three-day sessions
  • A workshop evaluation form
With creative, open dialogue, leaders can restructure their schools and fulfill every student’s potential regardless of race, culture, or class.​

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