The Antioch University Seattle (AUS) School of Education (SoE) was awarded a grant to support their work toward addressing systemic and educational disparities in Washington State. The purpose of the grant, entitled, “Pilot to Policy: Advancing Systemic Equity,” is to increase equity in educator preparation programs across the state and to inform broader policy connected to cultural responsiveness and equity.
The grant spans two years and will allow for deep, transformational work connected to racial equity, community engagement, and cultural responsiveness. As part of this work, the AUS SoE will convene a Committee of Community Advisors (CCA) to guide the AUS Master’s of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program toward practices that better reflect the perspectives and wisdom of our local and regional communities of color. AUS’s CCA will consist of education partners in local districts, community leaders and activists, advocates for immigrant and refugee students and families, and our own alumni of color who are teaching in the communities we hope to better serve. The CCA will have two roles: The first will be to help our faculty to review our foundational frameworks, policies, procedures, recruitment and retention practices, and field experiences with a community-centered, racial equity lens. The second role will be to provide guidance and mentoring to our teacher candidates in both on-campus courses and in their field experiences towards becoming culturally responsive, community centered teachers.
In addition, AUS faculty, along with other grantees, will participate in a work group over the course of the two years. Members will undergo trainings, report on progress, share learning and provide feedback, and serve as a collective committed to demonstrating results and best practices around this work.
The AUS SoE faculty care deeply about educational equity and want to make lasting changes in the program that can help it to better address the pressing issues facing education. Their proposal was selected based on the program’s commitment to advancing systemic equity and its ability to effectively pilot practices that will inform broader policy in relation to equity.