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Advancing Equity

  • 1.  Advancing Equity

    Posted 30 days ago

    I'm on the West Coast, so I am just waking up to the position statement. In the statement this recommendation very much resonated with me:

    "View your commitment to cultural responsiveness as an ongoing process. It is not a one-time matter of mastering knowledge of customs and practices, but an enduring responsibility to learn and reflect based on direct experiences with children, their families, and others."

    Equity is a path not a destination. 

    Thanks for listening.

    #EquityinECE

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    Sally Williams
    Director/Education Specialist
    Tempe, Arizona
    Las Vegas, Nevada
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  • 2.  RE: Advancing Equity

    Posted 30 days ago
    Exactly!  This is the part that resinates with me too!  What I think has happened is we have had experiences in our past, such as through elementary school assignments where we picked or were assigned a country and we had to write about it and dress up in the clothes they wear and bring a food dish representing what they eat.  We came to think of this as being culturally responsive.  But we need to forget the "go to" ideas of the past and develop new meanings and activities for this topic.  It is an everyday thing, not a once every school year thing.  We also need to realize culture is not just countries to learn about, but it is what makes each of us unique, such as varying abilities, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, political views, etc.  I also (because I am getting older) think there is age discrimination when print on pill bottles is SO small I can't read the labels!  Young people are creating labels us old people can't read!  When it boils down to it, we are all different and unique in so many ways and need to see and respond appropriately to these differences.  In our classrooms children are all the same and different in many ways, such as we all wear clothes, but each of our clothes may be different or we all eat food, but we each like or dislike different foods.  We need to develop this attitude in the children and adults we interact with so together we can build a more culturally responsive world.  I'm excited to see where this position statement will lead us.

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    DeAnn Jones
    Co-Facilitator for the Family Child Care Interest Forum
    Discovery Place Child Care, LLC
    Bozeman, MT
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  • 3.  RE: Advancing Equity

    Posted 28 days ago

    Thank you Sally for sharing NAEYC's new position statement, Advancing Equity in Early Childhood Education. 

    I wanted to share the text of the position statement and I also wanted to share the link where you can access the position statement in English and Spanish naeyc.org/equity/statement.
    Looking forward to seeing everyone's engagement with the statement in Hello and at this year's Annual.
    Position Statement
    All children have the right to equitable learning opportunities that enable them to achieve their full potential as engaged learners and valued members of society.

    Advancing the right to equitable learning opportunities requires recognizing and dismantling the systems of bias that accord privilege to some and are unjust to others. Advancing the full inclusion of all individuals across all social identities will take sustained efforts far beyond those of early childhood educators alone. Early childhood educators, however, have a unique opportunity and obligation to advance equity. With the support of the early education system as a whole, they can create early learning environments that equitably distribute learning opportunities by helping all children experience responsive interactions that nurture their full range of social, emotional, cognitive, physical, and linguistic abilities; that reflect and model fundamental principles of fairness and justice; and that help them accomplish the goals of anti-bias education. Each child will

    •  demonstrate self-awareness, confidence, family pride, and positive social identities;
    •  express comfort and joy with human diversity, use accurate language for human differences, and form deep, caring human connections across diverse backgrounds;
    •  increasingly recognize and have language to describe unfairness (injustice) and understand that unfairness hurts;
    •  have the will and the skills to act, with others or alone, against prejudice and/or discriminatory actions.

    Early childhood education settings-including centers, family child care homes, and schools-are often among children's first communities beyond their families. These settings offer important contexts for children's learning. They should be environments in which children learn that they are valued by others, learn how to treat others with fairness and respect, and learn how to embrace human differences rather than ignore or fear them.

    When early childhood educators use inclusive teaching approaches, they demonstrate that they respect diversity and value all children's strengths. Early childhood educators can model humility and a willingness to learn by being accountable for any negative impacts of their own biases on their interactions with children and their families. They can work to ensure that all children have equitable access to the learning environment, the materials, and the adult–child and child–child interactions that help children thrive. Early childhood educators can recognize and support each child's unique strengths, seeking through personal and collective reflection to avoid biases-explicit or implicit-that may affect their decision making related to children.

    To effectively advance equity and embrace diversity and full inclusion, early childhood educators need work settings that also embrace these goals-not only for the children and families served but also for the educators themselves. Early childhood educators should be well prepared in their professional knowledge, skills, and dispositions to teach in diverse, inclusive settings. They also need to be supported by, and to advocate for, equity- and diversity-focused public policies. Each of these areas is addressed more fully in the recommendations below. Although the primary focus of this statement is on equitable learning opportunities for young children, we stress that such opportunities depend on equitable treatment of early childhood educators as well. We make these recommendations understanding the critical importance of building a recognized early childhood profession and a system with sufficient funding to ensure that all its members receive equitable compensation and professional recognition that reflect the importance of their work.

    Recognizing that both institutional and interpersonal systems must change, our recommendations begin with a focus on individual reflection. Across all roles and settings, advancing equity requires a dedication to self-reflection, a willingness to respectfully listen to others' perspectives without interruption or defensiveness, and a commitment to continuous learning to improve practice. Members of groups that have historically enjoyed advantages must be willing to recognize the often-unintended consequences of ignorance, action, and inaction and how they may contribute to perpetuating existing systems of privilege. It is also important to recognize the many reactions associated with marginalization that begin in early childhood and range from internalization to resistance.



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    Lark Sontag
    Community Engagement Manager
    National Association for the Education of Young Children
    Washington DC
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  • 4.  RE: Advancing Equity

    Posted 25 days ago
    This Position Statement is important to our field at a time when we are "re-imagining our work" and engaging in efforts to be recognized as a profession. I was pleased to notice the Position Statement does not include the term "Cultural Competence". I am not comfortable with being judged or judging others as "Culturally Competent or Incompetent". The Statement does include the term "Cultural Responsibility" which calls for each of us to take responsibility for our words and actions related to diversity and equity.
    I recently learned about the term "Cultural Humility" and the Principles of Cultural Humility (see attached). I want to share them as another perspective to consider.

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    Linda Boss
    Instructor
    University of WI - Platteville
    Lewistown PA
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  • 5.  RE: Advancing Equity

    Posted 20 days ago
    Linda these are helpful resources. Thanks for sharing them. I like the idea of Cultural Responsibility and Cultural Humility. I'll be reading your attachments on my break.

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    Sally Williams
    Director/Education Specialist
    Tempe, Arizona
    Las Vegas, Nevada
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  • 6.  RE: Advancing Equity

    Posted 16 days ago
    Linda,
    Would you please re-attach the second pdf (Guiding Principles)?
    I am not able to open it.

    Thank you!
    Debbi

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    Deborah Musika
    Troy NC
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  • 7.  RE: Advancing Equity

    Posted 16 days ago
      |   view attached
    Here are the Guiding Principles of Cultural Humility

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    Linda Boss
    Instructor
    University of WI - Platteville
    Lewistown PA
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  • 8.  RE: Advancing Equity

    Posted 16 days ago
    Thank you! Got it that time!!

    Wishing you well, 
    Debbi