At Corbett School District we believe ALL students deserve to academically excel in an environment that honors and respects their diversity. We know that in order to provide this environment our staff needs professional development (PD) in the area of equity and inclusion. We have made a commitment to providing the training our staff needs in order to deliver effective instruction that is relevant and responsive for all students. We began this initiative as part of our Consolidated District Improvement Plan (CIP) developed in 2019, and understand that this will be a long-term project which will evolve and improve over time.
Consolidated District Improvement Plan – Diversity and Culturally Responsive Practices Initiative.
As part of our district improvement plan, we created an initiative committee consisting of teachers, paraprofessionals and an administrator with the goal of investigating and providing professional development opportunities for the staff in the area of diversity and culturally responsive practices. The committee spent the 2019-20 school year participating in various equity related PD opportunities and planning for professional development needs of the staff.
Equity and Inclusion Professional Development Series
Corbett School District committed both time and resources towards training our staff in the area of equity and inclusion during the 2020-21 school year. The district worked with trainers Kate Wocke and Adrian Mashia to provide a series of 3 two-hour professional development sessions focused on equity and inclusion for our entire staff.
Throughout the year we partnered with the Multnomah Clackamas Regional Educator Network (MCREN) to support a smaller group of teachers who met monthly to learn and think more deeply about issues related to equity and inclusion in schools. The ultimate goal was for these teachers to be prepared to serve as equity leaders in their buildings in future years.
Response to Staff Needs
At the end of the school year the teachers participated in a survey regarding future professional development needs. Continuing to incorporate equity and inclusion into the training calendar was a high priority for the majority of teachers. The leadership team decided that time during each of the district’s Inservice days would be dedicated to continuing the work on equity and inclusion.
Focus on Applying an Equity Lens
This school year we are focusing on applying an equity lens to ensure that all populations are considered when we are making decisions, both large and small. Corbett’s leadership team has been working to implement Oregon’s Education Equity Lens at a district level. In February, the team will be participating in a training Leading Through an Equity Lens presented by Paul Coakley Superintendent of the Multnomah Education Service District (MESD).
Throughout the year the teachers will participate in a series of three professional development sessions focusing on Using Courageous Conversation Protocols to Apply an Equity Lens. These sessions are being facilitated by our teacher equity leaders. Building principals are also finding time during staff meetings to authentically apply Oregon’s Education Equity Lens to building level issues and decisions.
Continued Partnership with MCREN
This year we are continuing to partner with the Multnomah Clackamas Regional Educator Network (MCREN). Our teacher equity leaders are working to advance their understanding of issues related to equity and inclusion in schools. They are planning and leading the Courageous Conversations PD series. At the end of the year, they will be considering our progress in professional development and advising the leadership team about future needs.
Training for Paraprofessionals.
This year we have partnered with the MESD to provide our paraprofessionals (educational aides) with a series of trainings entitled What We Do Matters. This series covers a variety of topics such as demonstrating professionalism and ethical practices, supporting a positive and safe learning environment, communicating effectively and participating in the team process, and equity & inclusion in a school setting. This is a pilot project. At the end of the year, we will evaluate and revise this program with the hope of continuing it in future years.