JCPS passes racial equity plan to add diversity to the classroom

JCPS school board unanimously approves racial equity plan

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A district-wide racial equity policy was passed unanimously at Tuesday’s Jefferson County Public Schools board of education meeting.

The plan includes the hiring of 128 additional teachers and 31 administrators of color.

It also includes additional training for schools, district administrators and school-based decision making councils on the importance of staff diversity.

At least two million dollars will go towards new initiatives included in the plan.

The plan also includes new initiatives to engage the community in conversations that would improve culture and climate in the district. One of those initiatives proposed by the Racial Equity Advisory Council is a “change the narrative” campaign to highlight the work of students of color. View the plan here.

"To hear that they could adjust it as they went was really encouraging,” Rev. F. Bruce Williams said. “We’ve been waiting for this type of policy for a while and for the implementation of it for the sake of the kids who have been falling behind.”

The racial equity policy was passed in May, and included the formation of an advisory committee made up of community leaders, students and teachers.

The group was tasked with developing the plan and making sure school leaders stick to it.

“We absolutely are critical friends of the district, but we are also in support of the plan and the work that is taking place,” advisory committee member Lettie Johnson said. “We are in a place where we are making progress.”

Johnson, along with 16 other advisory committee members, will continue to develop the plan.

“Our district cannot move forward unless everyone -- regardless of race or nationality -- advances,” Superintendent Dr. Marty Pollio said. “This plan sets out deliberate, intentional strategies to create educational equity throughout JCPS and reduce the stubborn gaps in achievement, opportunities and disciplinary actions among certain student groups. Perhaps most importantly, it clearly outlines the benchmarks by which we’ll measure our success, and it holds us accountable for hitting those targets.”

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