Racial Equity in IPS
Vision: An IPS community where student outcomes cannot be predicted by race or ethnicity.
Mission: To lead a collaboration of community members who will partner with IPS to improve outcomes for all students by eliminating racial disproportionality and disparity.
Racial Equity in IPS
In order to prepare us as employees to meet the needs of our students, Indianapolis Public Schools has embarked on an initiative around racial equity. By partnering with the Racial Equity Institute, we are able to receive the training and guidance needed to increase our knowledge, shift our thinking, and elevate our understanding.
The Racial Equity Institute (REI) is an alliance of trainers and community/institutional organizers who have devoted themselves to the work of understanding disparities and disproportionality in order to create racially equitable organizations and systems. In our contemporary society, the impact of race shapes the outcomes of all institutions. The trainers and organizers of the Institute help individuals and organizations develop tools to challenge patterns of power and grow equity. They provide the individuals and organizations with whom they work:
- an analysis of racism and its cultural and historical roots
- assistance in accessing their organization to determine its progress on the journey to become racially equitable
- assistance in creating structures to hold the efforts towards racial equity
- assistance in developing an anti-racist vision and plan for change
- coaching for traditional and emerging leadership in the principles and practices of racial equity
The trainers and organizers of the Institute have a combined 50 years of experience in community organizing and anti-racist training. They work from a movement approach to organizational transformation, recognizing the interconnectedness of all institutions and, therefore, the organizations that compose them. This principle centered approach relies on collective wisdom, returning power to communities served, reflection and evaluation.
Through our work with REI, we have developed a Racial Equity Team to move the work system-wide. The team members have been trained in a racial equity analysis, racial equity organizations/ development and charged with providing organizational support to each area of IPS. The team will develop an equity assessment tool for schools and the system as a whole and plan for the use of this assessment and for individual school training.
The schools below have volunteered to pilot our racial equity work. Recently, twelve additional schools were added bringing the total to nineteen.
Racial Equity Pilot Schools 2015-Present
- Charles Fairbanks School 105
- Clarence Farrington School 61
- Daniel Webster School 46
- Eleanor Skillen School 34
- Frances W. Parker School 56
- Rousseau McClellan School 91
- Stephen Foster School 67
Racial Equity Pilot Schools 2017-Present
- Brookside School 54
- Center for Inquiry School 70
- Center for Inquiry School 84
- Crispus Attucks High School
- Eliza Blaker School 55
- Graduation Academy & Step Ahead Academy
- Harshman Middle School
- IPS/Butler Lab School 60
- James Russell Lowell School 51
- Louis B. Russell School 48
- Northwest High School
- William Penn School 49
Reactions from Participants
The best thing about this Institute was:
“..making race a part of the conversation”
“..the new knowledge and information learned about racism and the impact on the family and society”
“The presenters! They were experienced, poised, organized, structured, knowledgeable, interesting, and sometimes funny. They were also very positive and reinforced each other.”
“It gave me a chance to self-evaluate and reflect on my personal being at this time in my life.”
“The overall message and method of delivery for deeper thought as we begin to understand race and society.”
IPS Diversity Statement
Indianapolis Public Schools is an equal employment opportunity school corporation which strives to deliver educational excellence, equitable access, and quality service to our students and families. IPS recognizes the educational and social value of human differences and their various forms. IPS is committed to an inclusive approach which affirms and embraces all aspects of diversity. We are strengthened by our unique knowledge, experiences, interests, hopes, challenges, cultures, traditions and families. We engage families as partners in education through trusting relationships built on culturally responsive two-way communication and mutual respect.
Recognizing our diversity, we are committed to equity in all of our work. We seek to allocate resources to eliminate discrimination and disparities. We strive to eliminate prejudice, bigotry, and intolerance and bridge gaps between and among our diverse students, families, staff and communities.
Our approach to diversity and commitment to fairness ensure that the students we serve are empowered to succeed in college, career, military and life.