New Haven Unified School District

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0000 Series: Philosophy, Goals, Objectives and Comprehensive Plans » 0415 Equity

0415 Equity

Philosophy, Goals, Objectives and Comprehensive Plans


The Governing Board shall provide equal rights and opportunities for all students. (California Education Code (EC) § 200)

The Governing Board shall promote educational equity and eliminate discrimination and harassment on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, gender, ethnic group identification, race, ancestry, national origin, religion, color, and mental or physical disability. (5 California Code of Regulations (CCR) § 4900; 34 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) §§ 100.3(a), 106.31)

The Governing Board believes that equity of opportunity, and equity of access to programs, services, and resources are critical to closing the achievement gap between our identified student groups: African American, Hispanic, English Language Learners, Caucasian, Asian, Low Socioeconomic Status, Gender/Sexual Orientation and Students with Disabilities.

The Governing Board believes that culture is defined as a way of life, especially as it relates to the socially transmitted habits, customs, traditions and beliefs that characterize a particular group of people at a particular time. It includes the behaviors, actions, practices, attitudes, norms, values, communication styles, language, etiquette, spirituality, concepts of health and healing, beliefs and institutions of a racial, ethnic, religious, or social group.

The Governing Board believes that culturally responsive teaching has these characteristics: Acknowledges the legitimacy of the cultural heritages of different ethnic groups, both as legacies that affect students' dispositions, attitudes and approaches to learning, and as worthy content to be taught in the formal curriculum. Therefore, culturally responsive teaching includes and incorporates multicultural information, resources, and materials in all subjects and skills taught; implements a wide variety of instructional strategies that are connected to different learning styles; and develops for students an awareness to identify, respect and acknowledge their own and each others' cultural heritages.

For the purposes of this policy, “race” is defined as “A social construct that artificially divides people into distinct groups based on characteristics such as physical appearance (particularly color), ancestral heritage, cultural affiliation, cultural history, ethnic classification, and the social, economic, gender and political needs of a society at a given period of time. Racial categories subsume ethnic groups.” Maurianne Adams, Lee Anne Bell, and Pat Griffin, editors. Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice: A Sourcebook. (2007).

The Governing Board recognizes that inequities lead to educational, social, and career outcomes that do not accurately reflect the abilities, experiences, and contributions of students, employees, parents and community partners. Such inequitable treatment limits future success and prevents individuals from making a full contribution to our democratic and pluralistic society.

The Governing Board acknowledges each individual’s right to follow or not to follow religious beliefs and practices, free from discriminatory or harassing behavior, and is committed to taking all reasonable steps to provide religious accommodations to staff and students.

The Governing Board commits to ensuring that equity and inclusion are essential principles of our school district and are integrated into all aspects of district policies, programs, operations and practices (in and out of the classroom, within human resources and hiring practices, central district and site administration).

The Governing Board commits to achieving equity and excellence for each and every student, preparing them for citizenship, higher education and the workforce.

The Governing Board commits to implementation of an inclusive and culturally relevant curriculum based on the California Common Core Standards guidelines and to review general fund and categorical resources, grading, assessment and evaluation processes, student disciplinary processes and instructional practices in order to identify and address discriminatory biases (unintended and/or unintentional) so that each student may maximize their learning potential.

The Governing Board commits to provide administrators, staff, students and other members of the school community with opportunities to acquire the knowledge, skills, attitudes and behavior needed to identify and eliminate discriminatory biases and systemic barriers under the California Common Core Standards Educational Guidelines and the California Education Code.

The Governing Board will provide the leadership and resources such that every student with support for his or her unique circumstances has access to and is provided the opportunities and experiences that lead to academic, emotional, physical, social success and spiritual safety.

Legal Reference:

200 California Education Code (EC)
51002 Legal development of programs based on stated philosophy and goals
51020 Definition of goal
51021 Definition of objective

Equity Task Force Subcommittee Resources:

Equity Task Force Slide Presentation, New Haven Unified School District, August 2012.
Equity and Excellence Policy Statement, Alexandria City Public Schools, Commonwealth of Virginia, adopted September 13, 2012.
Equity for African American Students with a Focus on Language and Culture, Enidlee Consultants,, Targeted Leadership Presentation New Haven Unified School District, Fall 2011.
Equity and Inclusive Education Interim Policy, District School Board of Niagara, Canada, May 2011.
Equity Board Policy, San Jose Unified School District, California, adopted May 13, 2010.
Board Policy #0400, Seven Essentials of Continuous Growth and Improvement, New Haven Unified School District, 2009.

Maurianne Adams, Lee Anne Bell, and Pat Griffin, editors. Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice: A Sourcebook. (2007).
Antiracism and Ethno-cultural Equity in School Boards, Ministry of Education and Training, Ontario, Canada, 1993.
Equity and Inclusive Education Interim Policy, District School Board of Niagara, May 2011.
Courageous Conversations About Race, Singleton, Glen E. and Curtis Linton, Corwin Press, 2006 (page 46).
Strategic Plan*, New Haven Unified School District, 2005.
Preparing for Culturally Responsive Teaching, Geneva Gay, Journal of Teacher Education, Vol. 53, No. 2, March 2002, 106-116.
Culturally Responsive Teaching, Integrating New Technologies Into the Methods of Education, Geneva Gay (2000).

First Reading
October 1, 2013

Second Reading
October 15, 2013