Update on the Anti-Racist Systemwide Audit
The MCPS Antiracist Systemwide Audit, which launched in the fall, provides MCPS an opportunity to examine systemwide practices and policies to ensure that race and bias do not impact access, opportunities or equitable outcomes for every student. Mid-Atlantic Equity Consortium (MAEC), the external consultant leading the audit, has begun its work.
As a reminder, the Antiracist System Audit will focus on analyzing six key areas to review the impacts of race and bias by:
- Conducting a curriculum review
- Evaluating school cultures
- Analyzing workforce diversity
- Examining work conditions and other barriers to equity
- Measuring the progress of the All In: Equity and Achievement Framework
- Recommending appropriate communication and engagement strategies
Next steps in the audit:
Equity Audit: February‒May 2021
MAEC has developed an equity audit tool that it has successfully used with schools and districts throughout the U.S. to help identify areas of potential inequities. This tool reviews policies, programs and practices that directly and indirectly impact students and staff relative to race, ethnicity, gender, national origin (English Language Learners), color, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion or other socio-cultural significant factors. The tool examines the criteria for an equitable school and is divided into the following sections: school policy, school organization and administration, school climate/environment, assessment and placement, professional learning and standards, and curriculum development. The tool will be administered in all 208 MCPS schools and will provide critical information on the district as a whole.
Stakeholder Survey: February‒May 2021
MAEC will develop a series of surveys to collect the perspective of diverse stakeholder groups, including MCPS students, staff, families and other community members. The surveys will assess experiences and perceptions related to the six key areas of the audit.
Town Halls: March‒April 2021
MAEC will conduct nine town halls to track geographic differences across the county. These meetings will be conducted in person (if health conditions permit) and live streamed. If MAEC is unable to host the meetings in person, they will be held virtually. They will be open to anyone in the community and will be led by a trained facilitator who will solicit feedback on each of the six key areas of the audit.
Focus Groups: April‒May 2021
MAEC will conduct 24 virtual focus groups with key stakeholders and community members to gain insights on stakeholder perceptions. Each group will include up to 10 stakeholders. These focus groups will be specifically designed to target underrepresented members of the MCPS community.
Final Report: June‒September 2021
MAEC will create a final report.
Recommendations, Dissemination and Strategic Planning: September‒October 2021
Following the final report, MAEC will work collaboratively with MCPS staff as well as the Antiracist Audit Steering Committee to make recommendations that will influence staff professional development and classroom teaching for students, as well as the MCPS Strategic Plan.
Two advisory groups will be engaged throughout the process. One will be composed of students, parents/guardians, teachers, supporting services staff, administrators and community members. This group will serve as the Audit Steering Committee and will work directly with MAEC to provide feedback on development, implementation, findings and recommendations. The second advisory group will be the Audit Expert Advisory Group. Staff in the Office of the Deputy Superintendent will be responsible for this committee. This group will engage a series of national and local experts on equity and diversity in education. Its members will serve as a “think tank” to provide feedback on audit progress and provide questions to consider from an academic expert lens.
To learn more about the antiracist audit and upcoming engagement opportunities, visit this website.