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Board Policy 0101 - Educational Equity


The Board of Education for the Prince George's County Public Schools (PGCPS), "the system", is committed to educational equity within our schools and work sites in order to foster conditions that reduce disproportionality in student achievement and performance.

It is the intent of the Board of Education that the students and staff members throughout PGCPS work, learn, and interact in schools and work sites that affirm diverse backgrounds, acknowledge the disparity of opportunities for, both, the students and communities the system serves, as well as promote educational equity in achievement and performance.

It is the belief of the Board of Education that closing the achievement gap is not just about instruction; it is the way that we think about, understand, and believe in the potential and capabilities of our students, as well as their families and communities, and how we effectively interact with them.

The Board of Education recognizes that students who may have certain social identifiers, have experienced Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), and/or live in communities that lack certain performance index measures will need access to resources that other students do not need, or have access to, in order to get the full benefits of the system.

Both the Board of Education and the system shall, through all actions, prioritize educational equity by removing institutional barriers and ensuring that social identifiers, ACEs, and/or Community Performance Index measures are not obstacles to accessing educational opportunities and supports.

The Board of Education further affirms the right of all students to have equitable access to a quality education that promotes college and career readiness, social/emotional learning, and supports the holistic wellbeing of the student.


Educational Equity:

In 2017, the Board of Education for the Prince George's County Public Schools (PGCPS) launched the 2017-2018 Joint Task Force on Educational Equity that, through its report (Appendix I), identified three core student demographics that have had historically significant gaps in academic achievement. These findings led to the following definition on educational equity, as related specifically to PGCPS:

"Educational equity in Prince George's County Public Schools is having adequate and appropriate access for each student, regardless of socioeconomic status, language of origin, or special needs, to ensure a high-quality education that empowers all students and contributes to thriving communities."

An equitable education, furthermore, constitutes providing access to essential academic, social, emotional, and economic resources, supports, and opportunities in order to progress and promote each student throughout their educational journey. It maximizes academic success for each student through rigorous instruction, with appropriate educational resources, so that our students shall achieve their highest potential, strengthen their social/emotional wellbeing, and ensure that their academic goals are achieved.

Social Identifiers:

The demographic factors identified as, but not limited to, age, ability (cognitive, social/emotional, and physical), ethnicity/race, family structure, language, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and socioeconomics.

Adverse Childhood Experiences:

Students who have encountered adverse childhood experiences have a higher probability of failing academically or dropping out of school. The term may be applied to students who face circumstances that could jeopardize their ability to complete school.

An adverse childhood experience involves, but is not limited to, the following:

  • physical, sexual, and/or emotional abuse, either direct or witnessed;
  • mental illness of a household/family member;
  • unplanned/unintended pregnancy;
  • homelessness and/or frequent residential mobility;
  • problematic drinking/alcoholic usage of a household/family member;
  • illegal street/prescription drug use of a household/family member;
  • divorce/separation of parents/guardians;
  • domestic violence towards household/family members;
  • incarceration/deportation of a household/family member; and/or the,
  • death of a household/family member

Community Performance Index:

Prince George's County Public Schools (PGCPS) serves a diverse grouping of communities, including many that are still handicapped by implemented public policies regarding housing, the environment, health care, economic vitality, and infrastructure that systemically prevented progression among many communities of color and/or poverty.

These generational public policies, and their unfortunate dampening on communal growth, have led to the disproportionate success throughout the county - a metric of success that can be measured and applied to the equitable allocation of educational resources. To measure a community's growth potential and need for additional educational equity resources, a Comnnmity Pe1formance Index, along with key topical, quantitative, and qualitative measurable must be established and taken into consideration.

Community Performance Index (CPI) measurables are, but is not limited to, the following:

  • the quality, affordability, and residential longevity of housing options;
  • the economic development and workforce availability;
  • the accessibility and quality of fresh, nutritional food items;
  • the reported violent crime rates of the community; and,
  • the access to affordable and quality health care

These measurable metrics shall be used to provide a quality education to every PGCPS student, in an equitable maimer.

Holistic Academic Wellbeing and Social/Emotional Learning:

In Prince George's County Public Schools (PGCPS), our students' academic success and wellbeing are strongly linked to high quality teaching and learning. A student's level of wellbeing in school is indicated by their satisfaction with encounters at school, their engagement with learning inside and outside their classroom(s), and their social/emotional behavior. It is enhanced when evidence-informed practices are adopted by school-based leaders in partnership with the families and communities served by the school. Holistic academic wellbeing is a sustainable mindset, characterized by predominantly positive feelings and attitude, positive relationships in school, resilience, self-optimism, and a high level of satisfaction with learning experiences.

Cultural Proficiency:

The intentional application of comprehended education-related cultural competence, which is the usage of cultural knowledge, prior experiences, and performance styles of diverse students with the goal of making education more understandable and appropriate through responsive instruction, cuniculum, and learning environments.

Goals, Desired Outcomes, and Strategies

The goals of educational equity within Prince George's County Public Schools (PGCPS) are as follows:

  1. Equitable educational outcomes for high academic achievement through opportunities in academic programs, activities, and supples, as well as rigorous courses of study;
  2. Equal treatment of students and staff members by embracing, valuing, and respecting their differences;
  3.  Equitable distribution of resources to schools and programs to support the academic growth of students and professional development of staff members;
  4. Shared accountability for all educational stakeholders responsible for every student having equitable access to a quality education, qualified staff members, a challenging curriculum, and appropriate academic supports;
  5. Elimination of structural and institutional barriers to educational opportunities; and,
  6. Eradication of discriminatory acts of hate, violence, insensitivity, and disrespect at schools and work sites throughout PGCPS.

The Board of Education recognizes that these are long term goals. As a result, in order to track the progression and sustaining of achievement of these goals, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) is responsible for reporting progress towards meeting the goals to the Board on an annual basis through the PGCPS Equity Plan.

The following are the desired outcomes for the Board of Education in regards to educational equity within PGCPS, "the system":

  1. Systemwide and individual school-based disaggregated data will be used to analyze trends, identify gaps, and produce systemic equitable solutions;
  2. Achievement of all students will be raised while narrowingthe gap between the lowest and the highest performing students, with a strategic focus on the aforementioned three identified core student demographics.;
  3. Emiched educational experiences of all students through the exposure to staff members from many backgrounds reflecting the demographics of the community, thereby providing settings for education that promote an understanding of diversity, contributing to the quality of the exchange of ideas inherent in the educational setting, and assuring all students, upon graduation, are successful in a diverse local, national, and global community; and,
  4. Our students' social identifiers, Adverse Childhood Experiences, and/or Community Perfonnance Index (CPI) measurables shall be seen as a valued asset to the educational philosophy and actions of each individual school and the system as a whole.

Furthermore, in order to implement educationally equitable practices for students within the system, the Board of Education establishes the following strategies for PGCPS, in order to best achieve the goals and desired outcomes established in this Board Policy:

  1. PGCPS shall foster welcoming learning environments where diverse cultures and experiences will be acknowledged, valued, and affirmed, as well as provide students with an equitable access to high quality, culturally diverse instruction, curriculum, materials, supports, and other educational resources that focus on the understanding and appreciation of culture, class, language, ethnicity, poverty, ability, as well their social identifiers, adverse childhood experiences, holistic academic wellbeing and social/emotional learning, and community's CPI measurables;
  2. PGCPS shall endeavor to recruit, hire, support, develop, and retain a culturally proficient workforce that reflects the diversity of the student body and communities of each respective school and shall provide professional development to strengthen their knowledge and skills for eliminating multiple disparities in learning and opportunity gaps that lead to academic disparities;
  3. PGCPS shall welcome and empower all families to engage in their child(ren) 's education, including the intentional involvement of stakeholders that reflect the system's demographics in order to better inform decisions made regarding the narrowing and elimination of achievement and opportunity gaps through academic course offerings and wraparound services;
  4. PGCPS shall review and modify policies, procedures, and/or practices that may impede the equitable access of students to fair discipline, extracurricular activities, before and after school day and school year academic resources and services, as well as academic programs, including but not limited to, the system's Talented and Gifted, Honors, Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, Specialty Programs, and Public Chmier Schools programs.
  5. PGCPS shall direct that educational equity be addressed in the system's local Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Consolidation Plan and that the CEO shall designate an administrative staff member responsible for the facilitation, monitoring, and implementation of the systemic equity initiatives within the Local ESSA Consolidated Strategic Plan; and,
  6. PGCPS shall consider a community's CPI measurables in all plans for new construction and/or renovation of existing facilities, as well as the distribution of physical and electronic academic supports for the weighted application of equitable access to twenty-first century learning environments.

Administrative Charge

The Board of Education directs the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to develop action plans with clear accountability metrics, as well as, administrative procedures to implement the goals, desired outcomes, and strategies outlined throughout this policy. The CEO is also charged with proposing the necessary allocation of Capital Improvement and Operating budgetary funds and the hiring and professional development of the necessary staff members to implement said goals, desired outcomes, and strategies.

Administrative Equity Plan

The Board of Education recognizes that the Prince George's County Public Schools (PGCPS) administration is multi-faceted with several dozen departments that, together, orchestrate the operation of one of the nation's largest and most diverse public school systems. The Board of Education also recognizes that, regardless of the level of interaction with students, school-based staff members, and the communities served by our schools, all PGCPS staff members and departments shall be singularly focused on the goal of educational equity.

It is with this outlined focus that the Board of Education requires the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to have each of the members of his/her Executive Cabinet produce an Administrative Equity Plan (AEP) for each of the departments that they are tasked with overseeing. Depmimental AEPs shall include, but are not limited to, the following information:

  1. The mission and staffing of the department;
  2. The applicative definition of educational equity and its relation to the work conducted by the department;
  3. The goals of the department to close systematically identified achievement gaps, through depatimental actions, in an equitable manner and strategies to achieve the goals identified.

The CEO shall then use the departmental AEPs collected as a comprehensive guide to formulate the PGCPS Equity Plan, which shall be a required submission to the full Board by the start of each Academic Year, as identified by the Boat'd-approved academic calendar, with a formal vote of affirmation by the Board of Education required no later than October 1st of the same Academic Year.

Establishment of the Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

The Board of Education hereby charges the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to establish and maintain an administrative office dedicated to the implementation of the Prince George's County Public Schools (PGCPS)' Equity Plan, led by an individual who has administratively identified credentials to promote educational equity and to engage key internal and external stakeholders on all matters relating to educational equity for PGCPS. The established office shall be named the Office of Educational Equity (OEE). The CEO may also staff the aforementioned office with the appropriately qualified staff members who will serve under the direction and leadership of the CEO's designee to lead the OEE.

About this Policy

Policy Adopted as 1213 6/10/76

Policy Amended 5/28/87

Policy Amended and Renumbered 102 2/25/00

Policy Amended and Renumbered O102 5/12/03

Policy Reviewed- No Revisions Required 11/9/04

Policy Amended 4/20/06

Policy Amended 8/16/06

Policy Amended and Renamed 3/27/14

Policy Adopted and Dissolved Policy O102 and Policy O103 4/25/19