Christie Goodman, APR

A Discussion about Diversity Training – Podcast Episode 90 | Classnotes Podcast 90

Classnotes Podcast (May 31, 2011) Schools are more successful when they actively embrace the cultural and racial diversity of their communities. And with federal requirements to protect the civil rights of their students and employees, school sometimes need assistance, particularly when local populations change quickly. The U.S. network of equity assistance centers are often called upon to help schools and communities better understand what they need to be doing to ensure that all of their students have an equal opportunity for academic achievement.

Bradley Scott, Ph.D., director of the IDRA South Central Collaborative for Equity, describes how today’s diversity training – that helps schools take stock and learn how to prepare themselves and their students for a diverse world – is so far removed from yesterday’s typical surface-level sensitivity training. Bradley is interviewed by Christie Goodman, APR, IDRA communications manager.

Show length: 16:09.

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Resources

South Central Collaborative for Equity
Includes IDRA’s equity guide for schools.
http://www.idra.org/South_Central_Collaborative_for_Equity/

Southern Poverty Law Center
Includes the SPLC’s Teaching Tolerance program
http://www.splcenter.org/

Center for Culturally Responsive Teaching and Learning
http://www.culturallyresponsive.org/

Fulfilling the Promise of Brown and Mendez
IDRA’s Blueprint Dialogues website with resources on creating cross-race community dialogues for education.
http://www.idra.org/resource-center/fulfilling-the-legacy-of-mendez-and-brown/

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Show Notes

  • Bradley talks about the resurgent need for diversity training for educators and explains the federal requirements involved.

  • Bradley lists three big issues around diversity facing schools these days – (1) lack of understanding, (2) feeling threatened, and (3) looking to just get by with minimum effort – and then explains what educators need to be doing differently in the face of these challenges.

  • Bradley discusses the ongoing process of diversity training with parents and communities, and why it’s much more than a “one-day workshop.”

  • Bradley talks about how he carries out the training in a non-threatening way.

  • Bradley shares a recent example of working with a school district that was facing increasing racial hostility and tension, as a large number of Latino students moved in to what had been a traditionally Black-and-White area.