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Presentation Transcript

In Washington, we work together so that all children start life with a solid foundation for success, based on strong families and a world-class early learning system for all children prenatal through third grade. Accessible, accountable, and developmentally and culturally appropriate, our system partners with families to ensure that every child is healthy, capable and confident in school and in life.

― Washington Early Learning Plan

WA Early Learning Plan Vision

racial inequities begin early

Opportunity Gap: Evidence of the opportunity gap can be seen in children less than a year old

  • WaKIDS: When looking at 2012 WaKIDS results by racial groups, the range of students with the characteristics and skills of entering kindergartners in cognitive development spanned from 62% to 80%
  • State Testing: In 3rd grade reading, white and Asian/Pacific Islander students outperformed Black, Hispanic and American Indian students by 21-27 percentage points on the 2011-12 state exam
Racial Inequities Begin Early
racial equity v equity

Data across multiple indicators show that – from day one – children of color in Washington are more likely to be poor and further from opportunity

  • Statewide attention to income equity is long-standing, while attention to closing the opportunity gaps related to race has been more limited
Racial Equity v Equity
using a racial equity lens

Reframing our work through a racial equity lens engages us in courageous conversations that help us:

  • Learn from our experiences
  • Foster healing
  • Uncover policies, practices and behaviors that sustain unequal outcomes for children
  • Forms of Racism




Using a Racial Equity Lens
racial equity theory of change re toc

Developed from April 2012-March 2013

  • Input from about 150 individuals who participated in 7 statewide conversations
  • Why it matters:
    • Provides collaborative vision and approach for all levels of WA’s early learning system
    • Identifies and helps us act on what we know about the best way to implement the policies, practices and cultural perspectives to realize the outcome we envision for children of color
    • Articulates how individuals, organizations and institutions can take both individual and collective action to reduce the opportunity gap
Racial Equity Theory of Change (RE-TOC)
building blocks of the re toc

Increase community voice and influence for those furthest away from opportunity

  • Inform practice with diverse measures and diverse stories
  • Make decisions that genuinely meet the requirements of communities of color
  • Design and implement systems that respond to children’s diverse situations
Building Blocks of the RE-TOC
putting the re toc in practice

Community of Practice

  • Advancing Racial Equity Grants through Thrive by Five Washington
Putting the RE-TOC in Practice
you can make a difference

Slow Down

  • Listen
  • Be curious about your community and work to understand your role in it
  • Create space for conversation
  • Ask powerful questions that generate curiosity and invite creativity
  • Think about who is not at the table and how to get them there … or how to be invited to their table
  • Consider different partners for your work
YOU Can Make a Difference

“While early childhood education has the proven potential to prevent educational inequity, if not dramatically improved, it will do the reverse and perpetuate it.”

  • ― Sharon Lynn Kagan, “American Early Childhood Education: Preventing or Perpetuating Inequity?” Equity Matters: Research Review No. 3, April 2009