Diversity and Equity

Are We Designing Girls Out of Education Technology?

This week, a software engineer at Google was fired for writing a widely-derided internal memo, critiquing the company’s diversity efforts for ignoring the “fact” that women are just biologically different from men. The author of the 10-page memo claimed, among other things, that women are innately less competitive than men—and that these differences are “universal across human cultures.”

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Fighting Apathy, Neglect and Racism to Give Left-Behind Learners a Chance

A friend of mine jokingly refers to me a “Pryzbylewski,” referring to the cop-turned-teacher in “The Wire” who develops a strong relationship with the middle schoolers in his class—many of whom are affiliated with gangs. I’m an ex-cop and I’ve got strong relationships with my students, but I don’t see that as a big accomplishment.

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Edtech’s Hidden Shortage: Women Directors

In just over a decade, 20 independent education companies have raised more than $2.7 billion in funding and are shaping the way education is evolving for students from grade school to higher ed. Collectively, 116 directors serve on the boards of these privately-held companies. Only eight are women. Even fewer are women of color.

The scarcity of female directors in edtech is a striking contrast to the diversity that exists in the sector's day-to-day leadership. As much as one-third of edtech companies started during that time have a female CEO or founder.

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Video, Apps, Newsletters and Portals—Four Ways Technology Can Boost Parent Engagement

Every parent knows the drill. You ask your child, “What did you learn in school today?” The response, “nothing.”
While parents and educators alike want families more informed about and involved in their children’s education, it’s often challenging for schools to find the time and means for these meaningful conversations. A nudge from the federal
Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) has sparked new interest in both parent engagement and the tools that can support it.

?OER Researchers Don’t Disaggregate Data on Diverse Students. Here’s Why They Should

With course materials averaging around $1,200 per year, many colleges over the past decade have adopted open educational resources (OER) to cut costs for students.

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Can Technology Help Teachers Start Tough Conversations about Race?

Technology certainly does not always make painful events from the past easier or more comfortable to discuss. In February 2014, a Belgium-based startup attempted to use a series of tweets to re-enact the trial of two white men accused of murdering 14-year-old, Emmett Till, a young black man, in Mississippi in 1955.

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This Accelerator Empowers Low-Income Students to Jump the College-to-Career Divide

Jalil did all that we tell our young people they need to do in order to succeed. He graduated from the Fremont Unified School District and went on to attend De Anza Community College. He worked hard, got good grades, and transferred to San José State University. As a transfer junior, he spent three hours each day commuting back and forth to campus and paid for school with grants and scholarships.

?Coming Full Circle: Giving Thanks to Teachers Who Change Lives

Every year, during Teacher Appreciation Week in May, many of us think back to our favorite teachers. I certainly do. I want to share the story of an amazing educator who has forever changed my life. And I also want to underscore how gratifying it is to have a career that enables me to support the work of teachers like her.

Why Can’t We Be Friends? NewSchools Re-Stirs Debate on Race and Equity in Education Reform

Why can’t we be friends? That question wrapped up the closing session at the 2017 NewSchools Venture Fund
Summit this week in Burlingame, Calif.
Now in its 18th year, the event rekindled an uncomfortable conversation that started last year, prodding the 1,200-plus registered attendees to consider the issues surrounding race and equity in education.

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Today’s DACA Student, Tomorrow’s Great Teacher

Ricardo is a college freshman, male, Latino, and wants to be a high school teacher. This is like finding a pot of gold in the teaching profession, and it is exciting to think about the students who will be learning in his future classroom.
Ricardo grew up on the southwest side of Chicago and attended Chicago Public Schools. He carries a backpack with a sandwich and books over one shoulder to help him make it through the three hour commute to and from college each day. Ricardo is also DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals).

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