Education Domain

The Mission of the Education Domain

As Kansas City area educational leaders, we will unite for societal transformation, strive to abolish attitudes and practices that have blocked minorities access to opportunities to learn, teach and lead thereby eradicating racial inequalities and injustices that have long been embedded into the fabric of the Greater Kansas City community. We mourn the state of race relations and lament we have not led addressing this in education.

If you would like to join us in our mission, please read the Covenant of Racial Reconciliation below and get started by choosing to do One Good Thing from our list of suggested actions. For more resources and information on upcoming Education Domain meetings, email us at education@unitekc.org. Together, let’s unite Kansas City!

Covenant of Racial Reconciliation for the Education Domain

Whereas education is both a right and responsibility of all educators and their leaders to create a world that empowers the next generation of learners to exceed their greatest aspirations. Through collaborative and dynamic education, learners identify and develop their skills, talents, and interests which in turn produces new ideas and actions that positively shape their learning landscape, community, city, and world. While the education community has talked and often met, it has not made substantive progress in resolving complex issues that drive the lack of minority student educational opportunities and minority educators’ advancement.

Whereas we recognize the catastrophic impacts that redlining created across our city and communities that have directly impacted educational opportunities for black or minority students,

Whereas literacy preserves our economic vitality and ensures every individual can access all opportunities for personal fulfillment and participation in society, yet we have not adequately prioritized literacy challenges. Lack of literacy proficiency is complex and is a prime indicator of the future incarceration of black students.

Whereas students of color participate in advanced placement classes and gifted programs at comparatively low levels, relegating them to low-level jobs vs challenging careers. Miller and Endo (2005) This “undereducation” starting as early as primary school, also limited postsecondary education eligibility. Eubanks and Weaver (1999)

Whereas the low rate of academic achievement among students of color contributes to them not entering the education profession. (Boser, 2011). Brown v Board of Education mandated black students be integrated into white schools, but it failed to order black teachers also be integrated. This led to marginalizing black teachers, which then further discouraged students to pursue a career in teaching. Relatable role models for both educators and students of color will help.

Whereas both elementary and secondary students need authentic and collaborative learning experiences on the history of racial injustice that engage their hearts and minds and empowers them to be part of solving, then celebrating, equality, diversity, and inclusion within education and beyond.

Now, therefore, we declare and affirm our commitment to lead and foster racial reconciliation in our city, and by my signature I covenant to:

  • Creating equal opportunity leading with humility to celebrate the great diversity of talent in our districts, schools, and communities as we realize opportunities that create long-term change for all to succeed.
  • Refocusing resources by engaging city-wide who influence city development, planning, zoning as well as educational policies, and distribution of resources.
  • Centering on literacy with a comprehensive strategy to engage schools, colleges, businesses, groups, and individuals to join in efforts to improve literacy, preparing the whole person for success.
  • Using data to create action plans to address pinpointed needs. This planning must be done collaboratively between district/school leaders/staff and students/parents.
  • Supporting minority educators through improved recruitment and retention of teachers and administrators of color in public and private schools.
  • Educating on racial issues for both students and educators through job-embedded professional development is essential to transforming the mind, then the heart, and thus creating lasting behavioral change.
  • Partnering with other Unite KC domains to support educational needs within their eco-system, identifying curriculum and materials to help alleviate the problems in their areas that directly impact the success of students and educators in ours.

I commit to this Covenant of Reconciliation and to Do One Good Thing to make it real.

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Your name and email address will be collected and added to a list to contact when new opportunities arise to serve in this domain.

 

References

Boser, U. (2011, November 9).

Teacher diversity report: A New state-by-state analysis. Retrieved from Center for American Progress (https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/education/reports/2011/11/09/10657/teacherdiversity-matters/)

Eubanks, S. C., & Weaver, R., (1999). Excellence through Diversity: Connecting the 64 Teacher Quality and Teacher Diversity Agendas. Journal of Negro Education, 68(3),451, 59.

Miller, P. C., & Endo, H. (2005). Journey to becoming a teacher: The experiences of students of color. Multicultural Education, 13(1), 2–9.

Pick One Good Thing and Get Started!

Suggested Actions

One Good Thing…Relationships + Learning fosters CHANGE

Participate in a quarterly prayer gathering organized by the Education Domain 

Attend an Education Domain Meeting 

Sign the Education Covenant 

Independently Volunteer time and/or resources at a Local School 

Partner with Caring for Kids Network at participating districts/schools and support collaboration efforts positively impacting schools and students 

Start your own racial healing book club using one of our recommended books listed on the website 

Donate to a Local School District Foundation (find on school district website – community) 

Invite family and friends to join you in the Dividing Lines Tour – A History of Segregation in Kansas City (VoiceMap Driving Tour). Follow the tour with participant discussion guide for deeper learninga nd discussion.

Invite family and friends to join you for the annual Underground Performance , telling the history and heroics of the Underground Railroad, a story of White and Black people coming together to work toward freedom, justice and equality. Follow performance with discussion for deeper learning and discussion.

Create a High School Learning “Externship” – Work with Unite KC Education Domain and KC School District Curriculum Leaders to offer opportunities, similar to internships, but generally shorter, in partnership between educational institutions and employers to give students short practical experiences in their field of study.

Invite family and friends to complete the Plaza Scavenger Hunt with you while you explore the Historic District  

Donate to local school supplies drives 

 

Curated Opportunities 

Caring for Kids

Caring for Kids vision is for all children to have hope and reach their highest potential through mobilizing community organizations in partnership with schools to inspire hope and help prepare children to impact their world. 

That is accomplished through a proven four-step process to engage the community – churches, businesses, and civic groups/nonprofits – to serve collaboratively around neighborhood schools. We work with the superintendents, district leadership, and the individual school principals to identify potential school partnership projects that best support the goals of an individual school.

Volunteer Needs

  • Serve as a School Organizational Champion with local school Caring for Kids Networks

 

C U in the Major Leagues

CYITML was founded by Royals General Manager Dayton Moore to support youth baseball, education, faith-based organizations and events as well as families in crisis.

How You Can Help

  • Honor a coach to be a Blue Coach with Character
  • Become a C10 Mentor

     

    kids at computers
    Meet the Voices behind this Domain

    Education Domain Voices

    Miranda Mendez – Domain Leader

    Founder, Crowd Ministries

    Anthony Moore

    Assistant Superintendent, Raytown School District

    Connie Springfield-Espinoza

    Administrator, Shawnee Mission School District

    Kathy Hirleman

    Kim Barney

    Lauren Aiello

    Michelle Fitzgerald

    Terry Geenens

    Tyrone M. Bates, Jr. Ed D

    Coordinator of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Shawnee Mission      School District

    Pam Harris – Board Member

    Education Specialist, DeVos Leadership Initiative