Equity, Diversity and Inclusion
“The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.”
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Equity is the foundation framing every aspect of the educational system from curriculum adoption to professional development. With this vision in mind, Oakwood Schools has established an Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Task Force to lead the District in creating a solid foundation. Here are two members of the task force, Crystal Melchor and Michael Wadham.
Oct, 12, 2020, members of the Oakwood Schools' Board of Education approved a resolution showing support for the Oakwood Inclusion Coalition.
The OIC's mission is "To study, promote and celebrate an inclusive, equitable, diverse and welcoming environment and community for everyone who lives, works, visits or passes through Oakwood."
With the help of Oakwood Schools staff and the Wright Memorial Public Library, we are developing a list of resources to help parents and students talk about diversity and racism.
If you're look for books for your child about diversity and race, here are recommendations from Oakwood Schools staff members and the Wright Memorial Public Library.
Here's Miss Jacqui with a book recommendation for students 8 - 12 years old.
Here's a read aloud from Oakwood Preschool Teacher Miss Rogers of the book "Say Something" by Peter Reynolds.
Here's a read aloud about protests from Wright Memorial Public Library's Miss Jacqui.
Harman Librarian Ms. Ford brings us an excerpt from Other Words for Home.
Here's a reading recommendation from Miss Jacqui for students in grades 9-12.
2019 Coretta Scott King Book Award Winners - arranged by age, from preschool to young adult. Awards are re given to outstanding African American authors and illustrators of books for children and young adults that demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture and universal human values.
Children Need Diverse Books - Wright Memorial Public Library Children's Librarian Karen Mills helps parents build an inclusive bookshelves for their children
A Mighty Girl - a list of books on prejudice and discrimination that can be sorted by age and reading level
Books and Resources to Help You Raise Anti-Racist Children - Brightly provides books as a great way to start a conversation about race with the kids in your life.
Elementary Reading Level
20 Picture Books for 2020
EmbraceRace was founded in early 2016 by two parents who set out to create community and gather resources they needed to meet the challenges they face raising children in a world where race matters. Here's their collection of 20 picture books.
Young Adult/Teen Reading Level
Ways to Make Sunshine - Renee Watson
Ryan Hart has a lot on her mind -- school, self-image and especially family. Her dad finally has a new job, but money is tight. That means some changes, like selling their second car and moving into a new (old) house. But Ryan is a girl who knows how to make sunshine out of setbacks. As her brother says when he raps about her, she's got the talent that matters most: it's a talent that can't be seen, she's nice, not mean!
Their Eyes Were Watching God - for young adults. The book, first published in 1937, has become the most widely read and highly acclaimed novel in the canon of African-American literature.
Here's a collection of blogs, podcasts, videos and a reading list for parents and educators looking for information on how to share information about diversity and race with children.
- Teaching Your Children About Race - a guide for parents and educators from Teaching for Change
- A Class Divided - 1985 episode of the PBS series Frontline that profiles Iowa schoolteacher Jane Elliott and her class of third graders, who took part in an exercise about discrimination and prejudice in 1970 and reunited in the present day to recall the experience. A companion to the video can be found on YouTube
- Talking Race with Young Children - 20-minute podcast from NPR
- Are Your Kids Too Young to Talk About Race - graphic illustration that provides guidelines for how to approach the topic of race and diversity with children of different ages
- Antiracist Reading - a reading list for adults compiled by the Wright Memorial Public Library
- Let's Talk: How to Talk to Kids About Race - an online series about talking to kids about race, racism and cultural differences from PBS. Host Karen Tao sits down with parents to have lively conversations about race and racism and how these topics inform their family life.
Choosing to Participate is a poster exhibition created by Facing History and Ourselves and the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service to encourage dialogue, engagement, respect, and participation in our communities.
The Wright Memorial Public Library presented Choosing to Participate as a part of its Vision to enrich minds and transform lives; its Mission to provide diverse opportunities for lifelong personal growth; and its Values of empathy and community. Visit the Wright Memorial Public Library's website to review this project.
Other resources provided by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service to promote "dialogue, engagement, respect, and participation in our communities" include:
- As part of the National Museum of the American Indian's development of the Americans exhibition, they worked with the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience to create a toolkit to help people facilitate new conversations with and among students about the power of images and words, the challenges of memory, and the relationship between personal and national values.
- The National Museum of African American History and Culture have created a website, Talking About Race, to provide tools and guidance to empower your journey and inspire conversation.
- Asian Pacific American Center's Standing Together Against Xenophobia addresses not only the hatred and violence that has recently targeted people of Asian descent, but also the xenophobia that plagues our society during times of national crisis.