In spite of decades of educational reform and federal mandates, inequities among students not only persist but are growing.
To eliminate these inequities, leaders must understand how their current piecemeal approaches are not only ineffective, but are exacerbating these inequities. Further, most equity work addresses only one aspect of inequities, such as culturally relevant pedagogy or developing culturally competent staff. Instead, leaders must learn how to transform the entire education system via Integrated Comprehensive Systems for (ICS). ICS is the only equity-focused work that takes a systems approach to eliminate inequities.
Key Features of ICS Include:
- Research based.
- Rather than piecemeal equity approaches, ICS provides a Framework and Process to shift from a deficit to proactive education system for all students.
- ICS advances the learning of literally all students in the district. Students currently succeeding not only will continue to succeed, but will make additional achievement and social gains. ICS also addresses racial inequities and the entire range of inequities across race, ethnicity, social class, ability, gender, sexual/gender identity and their intersections.
- ICS includes a built in accountability system via the Equity Audit that measures equity progress and serves as a continual improvement feedback loop to the ICS work.
- ICS embraces a local, bottom-up/team approach to equity implementation.
- ICS reallocates existing resources. No new resources are needed and all current staff are essential to advance the work.
The ICS Four Cornerstones
The ICS Four Cornerstones are implemented with community engagement and advance community development.
Focus on Equity
A focus on equity guides all team decisions. To develop a focus on equity requires a thorough understanding of the educational history of marginalization, a shift from deficit vs. assets thinking and practice, advance our own identity development across differences, apply the equity research, complete an equity audit, and develop Equity Non-Negotiables.
Align Staff and Students
Staff and students are aligned guided by the Equity Non-Negotiable of proportional representation. All staff share expertise through Co-Plan to Co-Serve to Co-Learn (C3)™ Teams in support of all learners.
Leverage Funding and Policy
All policies, procedures, and funding are aligned with the Equity Non-Negotiables and federal and state legislation is leveraged to eliminate inequities.
Transform Teaching and Learning
These Co-Plan to Co-Serve to Co-Learn (C3)™ Teams develop identity relevant and rigorous teaching and learning experiences with and for all students.
Who should use Integrated Comprehensive Systems?
All individuals who wish to eliminate inequities can benefit from the ICS Four Cornerstone Framework and Process, including educators in K-12 schools, districts, regions, state education agencies, educator preparation programs, universities, and community agencies.