Simple tips for navigating the backlash against antiracist policies and practices

The COVID-19 pandemic both exposed and exacerbated inequities in our schools, and along with 2020’s racial reckoning, it has created an overwhelming demand for tools and resources to build equitable learning environments and a will to change an education system that doesn’t work for every child. However, with progress comes backlash, and this spotlight on schools has caused a reactionary attack on equity in education.

There is no doubt that this backlash can be disheartening and overwhelming. But our work still has immense support from…


How to Strategically Invest Funds To Build Equitable Learning Environments

On April 22nd, the BELE Network hosted a webinar led by Bethany Little of EducationCounsel and LaShawn Chatmon of the National Equity Project to discuss how the strategic investment of funding from the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act can build equitable learning environments for students. Watch the recording and read highlights below to learn more:


A Conversation on How Districts Can Create More Equitable Math Classrooms

By The BELE Network

The Student Experience Research Network (SERN) and EduColor co-sponsored an installment of Just Equation’s “Mathematics of Opportunity” series in February. Moderated by Nicole Beechum of the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research, the panel featured:

  • Neil Lewis, Jr., Cornell University and Weill Cornell Medicine
  • Celine Liu, San Leandro Unified School District
  • Dana Miller-Cotto, University of Delaware, College of Education and Human Development

Participants asked educators to interrogate what we mean when we say a student is or is not a “math person.” The “math identity” adopted by students is formed through a variety of…


What Districts Need Now to Take Innovative Action

By The BELE Network

The Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (SREE) continued its virtual convening, , with a conversation on “Confronting New and Persistent Equity Challenges: What Districts Need Now to Take Innovative Action.” Nicole Beechum of the University of Chicago and a member of the BELE Network moderated the panel, which featured:

  • Tiffany Brunson, Principal, Field-Stevenson Intermediate School and Forest Park High School
  • Maurice Swinney, Chief Equity Officer, Chicago Public Schools
  • Eric Moore, Senior Accountability Research Officer, Minneapolis Public Schools

Their conversation highlighted many important themes around the greater visibility of equity…


Roads to Reinvention: Building Equitable Learning Environments webinar series by Transcend x AASA

By The BELE Network

In February, Transcend Education and AASA hosted an installment of their Roads to Reinvention webinar series on equitably responding, recovering, and reinventing school systems.

The webinar featured Superintendent Scott Muri from Ector County ISD (Texas), who has deep experience in launching system-wide reinvention initiatives throughout his career. Dr. Muri was also joined by a principal, teacher, and student, all involved in the reinvention work to discuss how the district uses Research and Development (R&D) cycles as a method of launching innovation.

The guests…


How following the lead of young people can dismantle inequities in education

By The BELE Network

The Communities for Just Schools Fund (CJSF) kicked off its #ReclaimSEL webinar series on February 3, 2021 with an installment titled “The Intersections Between Social-Emotional Learning and Education Justice.” The panel, moderated by Cierra Kaler-Jones and Jaime Koppel of CJSF, featured:

  • Zakiyah Ansari of the Alliance for Quality Education
  • Jesse Hagopian of Rethinking Schools
  • Carlos Rojas of Youth On Board
  • Gisele Shorter of the Raikes Foundation & BELE Network partner

Their conversation was insightful and wide-ranging, covering a variety of topics about social-emotional learning (SEL) and how it can be applied as a tactic to achieve…


By Dr. Sasha Rabkin of Equal Opportunity Schools & The BELE Network

In the past few months, Equal Opportunity Schools (EOS) has been recognized for its work to center racial and economic equity in education and received investments from a cross sector of philanthropy to continue their mission. EOS partners with schools and districts to operationalize their commitments to racial equity through creative, real time data analytics to ensure low-income and students of color have access to, and the opportunity to succeed. …


By The BELE Network


By The BELE Network

In December, Transcend Education and the American Association of School Superintendents (AASA) led their second webinar in the “Road to Reinvention” series. Edgecombe County Superintendent Dr. Valerie Bridges shared how her district has been reinventing itself using Transcend’s Designing for Learning resources, which dive into the science of how people learn and develop. Edgecombe has centered students and the community, launched microschools, and collaborated with state policy leaders to enable schools to design models that work best for their students including incorporating block schedules and HR shifts. …


UMOJA’s Resources to Support the SEL Needs of Students

By The BELE Network

At the intersection of multiple crises, how we show up to support our students matters. In order to fully embrace social and emotional learning as a practice, it’s important that we do our part to create opportunities and spaces for young people to process and understand the global pandemic, reckoning with racial injustice, and the tumultuous US election.

To this end, UMOJA Student Development Corporation released an Election 2020 toolkit of resources to support the SEL needs of students during these turbulent and often uncertain times. Even though the election has passed, this toolkit still contains…

The BELE Network

We are committed to creating learning environments that equitably support every student — especially students of color and low-income students. belenetwork.org

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