- Self-Concept and the Courage to be Gifted | The Grayson School[…] And here’s a powerful read on...
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We recognize that exceptional ability knows no boundaries, yet that inequitable access to resources may prevent gifted students who are disadvantaged from reaching their potential. Providing adequate and appropriate resources, and identifying and meeting the needs of all our students is central to our mission.
Maintaining a diverse community across dimensions is a priority, and we believe that justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (JEDI) are essential aspects of providing an optimal education for our gifted students. Our school utilizes research-based curriculum and pedagogical strategies to integrate these tenets into the foundation of the programming of our school. Through culturally responsive instruction and ongoing opportunities for interaction with diverse peers, both within school and the broader community, a Grayson education will promote the citizenship, development, social awareness, complexity of thinking, and communication skills essential for our students to thrive in an increasingly multicultural nation and global economy.
For more information, please read our non-discrimination policy and process.
As America continues to struggle with social justice and anti-Black racism, the hard work at Grayson taking place around becoming “anti-racist” is more important than ever. A just, equitable, diverse, and inclusive (JEDI) place of learning will enable our amazing students to become leaders of a world free from prejudice and hatred. The faculty, staff, and Board must persist in doing this work around advancing Grayson as an institution anchored in the JEDI principles and values, and lived out on a daily basis. It could not be more vital.
— Joseph Sun, Grayson Board of Trustees and JEDI Committee Chair
JEDI IN ACTION
Affirming Black Lives is a featured resource from Albert Academy that provides over 150 racial justice resources. This curated list of books, videos, articles, etc. is sectioned for Teachers and School Administrators, Creating Curriculum, and Students and Families. Click here to bookmark this ever-growing list of references on Google Drive so you can always access the most current list.
Below are a few more resources that we have found valuable in our work. We will continue to update this page with fresh perspectives and resources you may find useful at home and in the classroom.
- Chana Joffe-Walt shares a reading list that helped her understand what she saw and learned over the course of her reporting Nice White Parents, a new podcast from Serial Productions.
- Dr. Jennifer Harvey is an award-winning author, educator, and public speaker. Raising White Kids: Bringing Up Children in a Racially Unjust America is her most recent book, and Dr. Harvey offers an online course on raising anti-racist white kids. Read NPR’s Michel Martin’s interview with Dr. Harvey on talking about race.
- This 20-minute audio provides tips for Talking Race With Young Children as well as links to more resources.
- EmbraceRace has ten tips for parents of all backgrounds to teach and talk to their children about race.
- Subscribe to CodeSwitch, a weekly podcast from NPR that explores how race intersects with every aspect of our lives.
- 10 ways to de-escalate political discussions with friends and family who disagree with you (CNN)
- The Conscious Kid is dedicated to equity, disrupting racism, and promoting positive racial identity development in youth and has curated a list of books to help build inclusive classrooms. Created with Google for Education support, books range from Pre-K through grade 12, most with supporting materials. You will also find recommended helpful guidelines and questions to use when selecting inclusive and identity-affirming content.
- Download this Guide to Racial and Restorative Justice from the Abolitionist Teaching Network.
- Critical consciousness: A key to student achievement is a research-based case study from Phi Delta Kappan.
- Edutopia has published a few articles worth reading on Reflections on Becoming More Culturally Responsive and A Guide to Equity and Antiracism for Educators.
- Cult of Pedagogy has a great podcast and blog for teachers, with searchable articles by topic area. This post on Why White Students Need Multicultural and Social Justice Education and their podcast transcript on How Teachers Can Support Students of Color are recommended.
- Visit Teaching Tolerance for a wide range of resources, or download Teaching as Activism, Teaching as Care.
- Tools and examples from Teaching Channel can support educators and schools in Taking on Culturally Relevant Real-World Learning.
- Here are a few resources to combat the perceptions of native people. Typically the narrative around indigenous people in the U.S. is presented as the past only. This often has a lot of consequences on how people understand public policy.
- Lessons in Good Trouble for Minecraft: Education Edition helps educators explore social justice topics with their students.
- 9 Resources for Women’s History Month (Facin History)
- “How Are You Diversifying the Stories You Teach?” from Learning for Justice is a great resource for critical literacy.
- Intersectionality and the Making of a Movement (PBS LearningMedia)
- Listen to this podcast on Increasing Disabled/Other-Abled Representation in Media from Pretty Much Pop hosts Mark Linsenmayer, Erica Spyres, and Brian Hirt, join playwright Kayla Dryesse to talk about hurdles to representation, disability culture, whether “disability” is even the right word, negative stereotypes, and issues in portraying disability related to theater, comedy, horror, and superheroes.
- The Elegance of the Gray Area (Cult of Pedagogy)
- Can teaching civics in schools help break down barriers in American society? (PBS NewsHour)
- What does it mean to offer our students both compassion AND high expectations? (Teacher2Teacher)
- What Can I Still Learn About My Students? (Teacher2Teacher)
- This article from Presently Invisible shares the Uplifting Arab American Identity in Classrooms and tools for combating negative stereotypes.
Beyond Fasting: What We Can All Learn From Ramadan (Yes Magazine)
- Championing Equity and Supporting Social Justice for Black Students in Gifted Education (NAGC)
- Black Lives Matter in Gifted Programs from the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC)
- Growing Up Gifted and Generation Z: Vision for Equity from NAGC
- It’s A Social Justice Issue by Joy Lawson Davis in NAGC’s Teaching for High Potential, August 2019
JEDI in the era of COVID-19
- A Trauma-Informed Approach to Teaching Through Coronavirus (Teaching Tolerance)
- Building Resilience & Confronting Risk in the COVID-19 Era: A Parents & Caregivers Guide to Online Radicalization (Southern Poverty Law Center)
- COVID Resources that Take Race Seriously (EmbraceRace.org)
- Leading Through COVID-19: Key Questions related to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for Heads of School to Consider (National Association of Independent Schools)
- The racial impacts of COVID-19: Regularly updated news articles (EmbraceRace.org)
- Speaking Up Against Racism Around the New Coronavirus (Teaching Tolerance)
- Taking care during another COVID Surge recommends trauma-informed practices and culturally responsive teaching methods—including supporting Muslim students, families and educators who begin Ramadan observance next week amid the pandemic. (LearningforJustice.org)
After five years of growth and development as a school, our Head of School and Grayson Board of Trustees decided to create a new subcommittee of the board’s existing diversity committee. The newly constituted JEDI committee includes board members, faculty, staff, and parents. This committee is charged with expanding existing JEDI related initiatives within the school and proposing new policies, structures, and programs to help cultivate an inclusive learning environment where all students will thrive. The JEDI committee will spend the 2020-21 academic year developing a long range diversity plan in consultation with the board, faculty, staff, parents, and students. The founding members of the JEDI sub committee are:
Joseph Sun, Board Member, Chair
Melissa Bilash, Head of School
Tiffani Hurst, Board Member
Liad Pernock, Board Member and Parent
Liz Braun, Director of Development and Community Partnerships
Lindsay Andreas, Social Studies Teacher
Jorge Muñoz, Spanish Teacher
JEDI Discussion Group
In the summer of 2020 the JEDI committee launched a monthly discussion group for faculty and board members to discuss issues related to race and racism particularly within the context of education. Discussions are focused on the areas of critical literacy, gifted education, community, connection, and direct action. The group’s goals are:
- Develop a practice of anti-racism in the context of our school and our lives.
- Empower participants to build a strong community of reflection and action, and
- Grow a strong coalition of educators dedicated to creating a more just, equitable, diverse and inclusive school community and world.
This group will also provide a collaborative space for faculty to incorporate JEDI principles in their curriculum and pedagogy.
All Grayson Board members, faculty, and staff are welcome to join the JEDI group at any time.