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BLACK EDUCATION AGENDA

About

The Inland Empire Black Education Agenda report is a collaborative effort led by BLU Educational Foundation, in partnership with the Center for Social Innovation at the University of California, Riverside and the Inland Empire Black Equity Initiative. This report uses a mixed methods approach with quantitative data analysis and in-depth qualitative interviews with Black students and their parents/guardians in the Inland Empire. The study, which includes a survey of nearly 1,100 Black parents, students, and community stakeholders in the Inland Empire, provides insight to educators as to what Black students and their families note as their top priorities for equitable education. The recommendations from the report stem directly from the students themselves and fall into 5 key priority areas.

1

Academic Success

Academic Success was selected as the most significant priority of all the data compiled. Academic success aligns masterfully with the

How does BLU address this priority?

College Exodus Project

“EDUCATION IS FREEDOM!”

- STUDY PARTICIPANTS ON WHY ACADEMIC SUCCESS IS IMPORTANT.

Recommendations

For Institutions

  • Train school and district leaders to utilize a Culturally Responsive Leadership Framework to strengthen four key behaviors: (a) critical self-awareness, (b) culturally responsive curricula, instruction and teacher preparation, (c) culturally responsive and inclusive school environments, and (d) engaging students and parents in community contexts.

  • Require personalized plans for each student that monitors progression in academics as well as social-emotional development

For Institution & Community Partnerships

  • Develop, support and fund African American Parent Advisory Councils at the district and site level

  • Provide trainings to parents and community on how to be educational advocates for students 

  • Create an asset map with local nonprofit organizations and churches that can offer services and support to students and families

Black History

Black History was the second highest selected priority. Critical self-awareness is one of the four behaviors associated with the CSLR Framework and several participants explicitly indicated they selected this priority because Blacks need to be more self-aware.

How does BLU address this priority?

Black History Camp

“IDENTITY INFORMS AND DIRECTS ACTION. HISTORY IS THE FOUNDATION OF IDENTITY”

- STUDY PARTICIPANTS ON WHY BLACK HISTORY IS IMPORTANT.

2

Recommendations

For Institutions

  • Infuse the study of Black history into the Pre-K-12 curriculum. 

  • Create a Black Studies college and career pathway 

  • Mandate Ethnic Studies as a graduation requirement

  • Establish campus Black Student Unions to celebrate Black culture, lifestyle and history and foster student growth and development through community service and outreach

For Institution & Community Partnerships

  • Collaborate with community members to enhance Black studies curriculum through school activities and project based learning

  • Expose students to Black history year-round by exposing them to books, museums, exhibits, documentaries, community events, etc.
     

3

College & Career Access

College and Career Access was also high among the priorities selected as number one. Three of the four behaviors associated with the CSLR Framework align with this priority. In order to ensure more Black students have access to college and careers, CSLR framework suggests culturally responsive curricula and teacher preparation and culturally responsive and inclusive school environments.

How does BLU address this priority?

College Exodus Project

College Exodus to Health Professions

Leave No Money on the Table

Black Public Officials Leadership Training

“HAVING A DEGREE IS OFTEN AN IMPORTANT KEY TO SOCIAL MOBILITY”

- STUDY PARTICIPANTS ON WHY COLLEGE AND CAREER ACCESS IS IMPORTANT.

Recommendations

For Institutions

  • Make FAFSA/Dream Act completion a high school graduation requirement

  • Hire and train culturally competent college and career counselors, advisors, and staff 

  • Create an articulation agreement between high schools and post-secondary institutions to include Dual-enrollment programs.
    Provide sufficient Career and Technical Education courses of interest to Black students

     

For Institution & Community Partnerships

  • Invite community members and colleges to meet and discuss career and college options

  • Build awareness in the Black community regarding college articulation agreements and college promise programs 
     

Effective Teachers

It is crucial for African American students to have good teachers for several reasons. First, good teachers make their students feel safe, cared for, and as if they belong.

How does BLU address this priority?

Black Educator Pipeline

“BLACK STUDENTS NEED TEACHERS WHO BELIEVE IN THEM AND HAVE THEIR BEST INTERESTS IN MIND.”

- STUDY PARTICIPANTS ON WHY EFFECTIVE TEACHERS ARE IMPORTANT.

4

Recommendations

For Institutions

  • Establish a pipeline of quality teachers and administrators by prioritizing and incentivizing the recruitment, hiring, and retention of African-American educators

  • Create an Education/Teacher Pathway and Pipeline for future Black teachers

  • Provide training for teachers to use English Language Development (ELD) strategies to eligible students to improve language development

  • Provide cultural competency training for educators on all levels preschool through college
     

For Institution & Community Partnerships

  • Include parents and community members as an integral part of the hiring and development of teachers and professors

  • Share key school data of interests to families with the community at large 

  • Create goals and strategies to increase parent and community involvement in schools and colleges 

5

Graduation

Academic Success was selected as the most significant priority of all the data compiled. Academic success aligns masterfully with the

How does BLU address this priority?

College Exodus Project

"I BELIEVE THAT GRADUATION IS THE FIRST STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION."

- STUDY PARTICIPANTS ON WHY GRADUATION IS IMPORTANT.

Recommendations

For Institutions

  • Prevent, intervene, and retrieve Black students who are at risk of dropping out or who have dropped out of the preschool through college system, by: 

    • Providing special interventions and services to support students and their families. 

    • Expanding retention programs with the aim of tracking, retaining, and re-enrolling students.

For Institution & Community Partnerships

  • Partner with businesses and communities to offer graduation incentives, internships, and job opportunities

  • Provide and support interventions, mentorships, and parent partnerships that ensure student and family success