This story was originally published by Chalkbeat Colorado. More at chalkbeat.org.
Creating mentoring programs for teachers, not just those who are new, training advocates who can represent educators of color, and requiring districtwide training. Those are some of the strategies that a group of Aurora educators proposed to improve staff diversity in the district.
The Aurora school board in February passed a resolution to improve the hiring and retention of educators or color. Still, teachers of color continued to speak to the board for months after, asking for a more detailed plan.
In April, Aurora joined some Denver schools in working with Promise 54, a national nonprofit helping schools improve their diversity, equity, and inclusion.
As part of that work, Aurora teachers and administrators have spent several months surveying district employees and holding focus groups to talk about diversity problems and how to solve them.
On Tuesday, the group presented a draft action plan to the school board including long-range work as well as more immediate steps to take. While the ideas lack funding, the staff told board members that as next school year’s budget is created, the board can make funding this work a priority.