Partnering with regional and national education leaders, the East Carolina University College of Education Department of Educational Leadership hosted a school equity summit on Feb. 19-20, at the Eastern Area Health Education Center.Partnering with regional and national education leaders, the East Carolina University College of Education Department of Educational Leadership hosted a school equity summit on Feb. 19-20, at the Eastern Area Health Education Center.
The summit was part of the FORCE: Focusing on Rural Challenges in Education initiative, which is a national collaborative involving the school districts in Duplin, Jones, Pender, and Sampson counties of North Carolina, as well as the ECU Department of Educational Leadership, and the nonprofit Panasonic Foundation.
The purpose of the FORCE initiative is to improve equity in the classroom, maximize student achievement, and close achievement gaps for all students. All school district leadership teams were engaged in activities to help improve their vision for instructional leadership, shared beliefs around equity, and focused discussion around support and resources across the districts.
This professional learning summit provided opportunities to analyze three topics that impact equity in schools:
- “Racial Diversity,” presented by Matt Militello, ECU College of Education Wells Fargo Distinguished Professor of Educational Leadership
- “Linguistic Diversity,” presented by Marjorie Ringler, Interim Chair, ECU College of Education Department of Educational Leadership
- “Transforming Learning with Technology,” presented by Thomas Murray, co-author of “Learning Transformed: 8 Keys to Designing Tomorrow’s Schools, Today”
Each school district team incorporated all three presentations in work sessions that revolved around analyzing their school district data through the lens of equity. Each school district worked to develop an equity goal to implement upon returning to their school districts.
The Panasonic Foundation is an operating, not grant-making, nonprofit foundation whose mission is to break the links between race, poverty, and educational outcomes by improving the academic and social success of all students. The foundation was created in 1984 by a $10 million endowment from Matsushita Electric Corporation of America, which has since been renamed Panasonic Corporation of North America. The Foundation’s resource base was later strengthened with an additional endowment of $10 million from the company’s parent corporation, Matsushita Electric Industrial (now Panasonic Corporation).