In response to the Dr. Bailey report on the factors contributing to the opportunity gap that exists for our African-American students and educators, the DPS Board of Education and Superintendent commissioned an African-American Equity Task Force in the fall of 2016.
Led by Allen Smith, associate chief of the district’s Culture, Equity and Leadership Team, the task force was made up of more than 100 parents, educators and community leaders who received guidance from an executive council made up of leaders in Denver’s African-American community. The work was a significant time investment for community members. From surveys to community meetings — sometimes twice a week — the team dedicated themselves to finding ways to improve outcomes for African-American students and educators.
The charge was two-fold for the task force. The first part included members conducting a thorough review of the current state of African-American students, educators and families to gain an understanding of contributing factors; and, generating recommendations DPS can employ to improve the outcomes for the African-American community. The next phase in this continued partnership between the district and the African-American community will be to prioritize and lay out next steps.
“We are deeply appreciative of the work that has been done to research, discuss and draft the recommendations,” said Superintendent Tom Boasberg. “We look forward to continue working with task force members to put the recommendations into practice.”
While there is still work to do, the initial partnership effort marks a tremendous start toward providing culturally responsive instruction for students, improving engagement with families and ensuring equity for all.
Read the Task Force Recommendations. The African-American Equity Task Force was asked to develop and present a set of prioritized recommendations to help close the Opportunity Gap for our African-American students and educators. Since being presented to the Board of Education, the district is working to develop work plans and prioritize actions in response to the recommendations.
Are you interested in receiving updates about our progress, invites to events in support of equity and inclusion, and opportunities to provide meaningful feedback? If so, please complete the form to register as an Equity Ambassador. Register HERE