RISE UP! Carving a Path for Educational Equity and Justice

  • Proudly presented by The Providence Public Schools Office of Equity & Belonging 

    Our educational system did not have marginalized identities in mind when it was constructed. Therefore, educational systems are not equitable systems. As a result, many students, especially those from historically marginalized groups (based on race, income, gender, language, and culture, etc.), experience limited access to rich learning experiences (Darling-Hammond 2019). “Indeed, schools were designed to select and sort, rather than to develop potential… and segregation, unequal school funding, and tracking systems, institutionalized racism and classism are baked into the design.” (Darling-Hammond 2019) We know that for all students, schools must be more than just a place for them to gain a standardized education. Schools must be an incubator that grows students into productive, empathetic, and responsible adults. The impact that schools have on our communities affects the way our society evolves (Thompson et al. 2018).


    Over the past three years, COVID19, increased racial violence, and a troubled economy, have not helped to support all students, particularly those who need more support, personalized and differentiated learning experiences. Presenters will share research, best practices, tools and strategies which participants will be able to share with their colleagues, families, and students in their schools, communities, and districts. Participants will engage in dialogue and discussions highlighting the vital need for the transformation of beliefs, culture, policies, systems, and procedures. Unfortunately, these still serve as barriers for our young people. Barriers that we must work together to overcome, for their sake and ours.


    The purpose of this conference is to empower stakeholders to be part of the change that is needed for a new generation to thrive, as  part of a movement for advancing educational equity and justice. The theme of the conference, “Educational Equity and Justice for All Students”, is a reminder that we must build the collective capacity needed to advance our future aspirations for our young people. It is also a reminder that we must be brave and fiercely committed to pursuing even our most audacious goals for educational equity and justice, by:

    • Empowering individuals and promoting collective responsibility toward a more inclusive and equity focused education

    • Fostering new collaborations and networks among stakeholders

    • Building from the collaborative nature of this field to exchange and scale what works— informed by evidence from evaluation and research—and to learn from failures

    • Sourcing new ideas and opportunities from the communities we serve and from outside our field, and forging relationships and partnerships with community leaders and across sectors

    • Influencing how the world sees the field of education, and demonstrating our ability to deliver societal value and impact

    • Providing strategies and tools for action beyond the conference

    Participants will learn in community, and engage in robust discussions that will help them envision educational equity and justice for all students, in practical ways. They will gain new tools, skills, and strategies that they can use to begin or continue to transform their respective spaces, for young people.


    Workshop Foci - PPSD's Equity Framework: 

    • Family and Community Engagement (FCE)

    • Accountability and Transparency (AT)

    • Student Empowerment and Agency (SEA)

    • Climate, Culture and Belonging (CCB)

    • Culturally Responsive Education (CR)

    Outcomes - Participants will:

    • Develop a shared understanding of what we mean by educational equity in our community and why it is important  

    • Imagine what it would take to develop a more inclusive educational system where all students are invited to excel academically, artistically, culturally, socio-emotionally, etc.

    • Understand what their role could be as equity-focused leaders in this effort and how schools and communities can work together 

    • Understand how we can collectively support our Turnaround Action Plan in an embracing and actualizing way towards the Guiding Principles for Equitable Whole Student Design

      • Development of Positive Developmental Relationships 

      • Building Safe Environments Where Students Feel A Strong Sense of Belonging 

      • Rich Learning Experiences and Knowledge Acquisition

      • Development of Skills, Habits, and Mindsets 

      • Integration of Support Systems


    Photos by Aiyah Josiah-Faeduwor

    Thank you to the CPEEJ Conference Working Group:

    Marcella Astudillo, Cherilyn Bonin, Law-Rel Butler (ARISE), Treda Collier Dickenman, Ruth Corley, Matthew Farinha, Aubrey Johnson (PPSD Parent Advisory Council), Soljane Martinez, Fabiola Morino, Joselyn Ramirez (PLEE), Ramona Santos Torres (PLEE), Sandra Stuart, Nancy Xiong (ARISE).