Lyle Hurst | Erin Trent Johnson | Leslye Louie | Frances Messano | Tanya Paperny
Published: July 25, 2017
"Research across many sectors has demonstrated the myriad benefits of diversity to organizational health and effectiveness. Diverse teams translate to higher rates of staff satisfaction and retention and more innovative ideas. In classrooms, Black and Latin students taught by teachers who share their racial backgrounds benefit from a culture of higher expectations, fewer discipline referrals, and improved academic outcomes.
And yet, the education sector as a whole — the districts, charter management organizations, nonprofit organizations, advocacy groups, think tanks, foundations, technology providers, and others — is still far from reflecting the communities and students it seeks to serve. On top of that, a lack of consistent data collection about staff demographics; organizational efforts to become diverse, inclusive, and equitable; and the ways in which those efforts are actually experienced by staff members inhibits our ability to effectively isolate promising practices, measure progress, and hold one another accountable.
This purpose of the study is to enhance knowledge in the field about the role of diversity, equity, and inclusion in education organizations by exploring the following questions: (1) What are the racial and socioeconomic demographics of staff, leadership, and boards in education organizations? (2) What are the policies and practices that education organizations employ in relation to diversity, equity, and inclusion? (3) What are staff perceptions of diversity, equity, and inclusion in their organizations and of related practices and behaviors? (4) What are the perceived links between organizational diversity, equity, and inclusion and student success?
This study includes data from more than 200 organizations on organizational demographics, policies, and structures and nearly 5,000 individual perspectives on lived staff experiences in relation to diversity, equity, and inclusion with an intentional focus on race and ethnicity."