If you are interested in making an impact as an educational leader, one of the most important ways you can create positive change is by working to ensure that your school or district has created a learning environment where students of all backgrounds can thrive and where a diverse faculty and staff can excel at their jobs. Indeed, diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) are paramount considerations of educators in schools all across the country, who are working hard to redress an existing system that has been widely decried as unequal.
Some educational leaders regard the issue of inclusion as the primary focus of their work, and indeed, it is a vast and complex enough subject that it could occupy one’s efforts for a long time to come.
DEI initiatives are not one size fits all. Different populations have different needs, and one’s existing school organization will greatly determine the possibilities for transformation and change. Educational leaders can start by learning about the varied issues facing communities of all types so that they can run schools that foster tolerance and inclusivity.
The following resources can help educational leaders create supportive environments through materials that include historical context, strategy tips, curricula, workshop opportunities, and more.
Students with Physical Disabilities and Learning Exceptions
The Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund is a civil rights law organization offering resources for educators and parents, with particular attention to special education policy and other forms of legal advocacy for students with disabilities.
This initiative from CAST works to improve and sustain the availability of accessible materials and technologies for those with disabilities. Their website includes numerous resources including articles, video lectures, and more, with a particular attention to how up-and-coming technologies can support students with disabilities.
The NCDB is part of a nationwide network of organizations working to support young people with deaf-blindness, partly through providing assistance to educational institutions and state initiatives. Their website features numerous resources for educational leaders, including curricula on creating a more accessible learning environment.
This organization is devoted to improving the experiences of students with disabilities and their families. Their website features resources including institutional tips, cheatsheets, articles, and more.
The NCLD is a research organization working to support students with learning disabilities in schools through advocacy and educational outreach programs. Their website includes resources for educational leaders on topics including reading strategies, assistive technology, and more.
AAUW is a national organization that works to advance gender equity along a range of topics including education. Their resources on girls in school provide research materials and information on the current state of policy to help educational leaders create more supportive spaces for girls.
Girl Rising is an organization that focuses on girls’ education and empowerment, with information that can help educational leaders create more affirming environments for girls. Their Educator Resources page provides numerous tools to support girls in school, including videos, curricula, interactive web activities, and more.
The NCWGE is an organization that creates educational campaigns, research initiatives, and monitoring programs to promote equality and security for women in school. Their website features numerous research reports with an emphasis on public policy.
The NGCP is an organization working to encourage girls in the fields of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). Their resources include an overview of the current state of STEM.
This resource from the UN agency UNESCO provides resources to put girls’ education in an international context and provide supportive materials for educators around the world.
PFLAG is a national organization that supports LGBTQIA+ individuals and their families through advocacy, educational outreach, and more. Their website features resources to educational leaders to make their schools safer and more inclusive for all.
Queer Kid Stuff is an organization that helps parents and educators create environments that celebrate LGBTQIA+ identity. Their resources for educators include queer-affirming media for students as well as support groups and workshops for LGBTQIA+ educational leaders.
The Safe Schools Coalition is a public-private organization that works with schools to create more inclusive programs for students and families of all sexual orientations and gender identities. Their website features extensive resources on a wide range of educational and LGBTQIA+ topics.
TSER is a youth-led advocacy organization that supports transgender and gender-nonconforming students by providing materials to help educational leaders create a more affirming learning environment.
TYEF is an organization devoted to making schools safer and more inclusive of transgender and gender non-conforming students. Their resources for educators include training workshops, articles, printable classroom posters, and more.
CREED is a nonprofit organization fighting for educational justice for students of color. Their website includes an educator toolkit as well as podcasts and a newsletter.
This organization has created a network for students, educators, and communities of color to make schools more supportive environments for teachers and students alike. Their resources include toolkits for student learning and facilitation guides for intra-faculty discussions.
Harvard Business Publishing offers extensive DEI resources for educational leaders to help illuminate key issues and provide best practices for creating an inclusive environment. The case studies above are focused on the experiences of BIPOC.
This organization, formerly known as Teaching Tolerance, is a branch of the Southern Poverty Law Center. It provides extensive educational resources for educators and educational leaders to understand the experiences and needs of BIPOC students as well as lesson plans and curricula to bring into the classroom.
This article is an excellent resource for educational leaders who are looking to create supportive structures for the faculty at their schools. It includes extensive data-driven information to paint a picture of the needs of BIPOC faculty in schools across the US.
This website provides statistics-driven research on AAPI experiences that educational leaders can use to inform school policies and agendas. There is an education-focused section of this website as well as sections devoted to the experiences of AAPI women, AAPI individuals who identify as LGBTQIA+, and more.
These DEI resources from Harvard Business Publishing are designed to help educational leaders understand the issues facing students from marginalized demographics. The above case studies are focused on AAPI perspectives and causes.
Head Start is an organization focused on improving early education for communities in need. This guide provides extensive resources to help educational leaders create supportive institution for children from a young age.
This guide from Learning for Justice includes materials that celebrate Asian American heritage and culture, as well as speaking to the experiences of LGBT Asian Americans. These include webinars, videos, personal essays, and more.
This guide is focused on educating students about recent incidents of anti-Asian hate to place the AAPI experience in perspective. It is a great guide for educational leaders to bring to their faculties.
Colorín Colorado is an organization that develops resources to help educators support English language learners (ELLs), whose academic needs can differ from their classmates. The materials featured on their websites are included in both English and Spanish.
This index of resources designed for teachers and educational leaders to support ELL students, including hands-on classroom activities, strategic tips, firsthand perspectives, and more.
This program provides literacy-building resources for ELL students and their families which include school programs for parent involvement. They offer supportive services for students at all grade levels, starting from infancy.
NABE is an advocacy organization that promotes the needs of bilingual students, working to ensure that such students receive an exemplary education. Their resource offerings include materials to help educational leaders prepare productive environments for ELL students.
NLEI offers resources designed for educational leaders seeking to improve outcomes for Latinx students across grade levels. Their website offers workshops for educators as well as information on teaching strategies, family engagement, and community partnerships.
This series of webinars by Learning for Justice and the Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding is designed to help educators approach religious diversity to create a safe space and nurture productive conversations between students of a variety of faith-based backgrounds. Each webinar also features a set of lessons and activities that teachers can use in the classroom.
This initiative by the Newseum features numerous articles on current issues in religious freedom, with many topics covering school governance and educational models that support religious diversity.
The Pluralism Project provides resources specifically designed for educators and educational leaders seeking to promote a culture of religious diversity in their schools. These offerings include case studies, lesson plans and discussion topics, and focus studies on a number of major religions.