Culturally Responsive Education

  • What is Culturally Responsive Education?

    Culturally Responsive Education (CRE) is a research-based approach to teaching that makes meaningful connections between what students learn in school and their cultures, languages, and life experiences.  Teachers using this method encourage each student to relate course content to his or her own cultural context.

    The CRE framework helps educators create student-centered learning environments that:

    • affirm racial, linguistic, and cultural identities
    • prepare students for rigor and independent learning
    • develop students’ abilities to connect across lines of difference
    • elevate historically marginalized voices
    • empower students as agents of social change

    Did you know…?

    Did you know that KCSD works with community partners to give our students a more well-rounded education, even into college? 

    Peaceful Guardians, Brothers at Bard, Ulster Immigration Defense Network, Ulster Literacy Association, Today’s Students Tomorrow’s Teachers, Brighter Futures Initiative, International Institute of Restorative Practices, SUNY Ulster President’s Challenge

    Did you know that KCSD has done a multitude of book studies to raise awareness to racial injustices?

    “So, You Want to Talk About Race”, “White Fragility”, “How to Reach the Hard to Teach”, “Teaching with Poverty in Mind”, “Integrity”, “Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?”

    Did you know that the KCSD District Comprehensive Improvement Plan (DCIP) features CRE based action steps?

    • Provide training on Culturally Responsive Education awareness for all KCSD Faculty and Staff
    • Add Culturally Responsive Social-Emotional Well Being (SEWB) to daily lessons K-12

    Did you know that each year KHS holds a “Unity in our Community” dinner?

    Kingston High School celebrates cultural unity each spring with an annual, culturally diverse pot-luck dinner. It is an evening of local collaboration, creativity, and cuisine, showcasing how differences can bring us together.

    Did you know that the KCSD Board of Education adopted an anti-racism policy on June 19, 2020?

    The resolution states that “we pledge to explore ways to ensure and increase equity in the Kingston City School District and will use all our means towards creating truly inclusive environments.” Read the full resolution here 

    Did you know that the Kingston Teachers’ Federation (KTF) was invited to join with the New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) and the Education Learning Trust (ELT) in a multi-year Empowering Early Career Educator’s for Racial Justice grant offered by the National Education Association (NEA)?

    This grant involves partners from the SUNY Albany Center for Racial Justice in Education and Teacher Centers, and focuses on programs to deepen the understanding of racial justice principles and the impact of racial justice issues on students, educators, and community members.

    KCSD is currently in year 3 of this initiative and has provided this valuable learning to over 100 teachers and staff.  

    Did you know that KCSD has a Teacher Mentor Program for all incoming faculty?

    The Kingston Teachers Mentoring Program pairs all new faculty with teacher mentors. Together, they participate in a year-long series of relevant workshops to enhance awareness and create actionable strategies to embrace equity and justice and effect change on racial/ethnic justice issues.

    The content of these workshops specifically reviews and discusses research on racial disparities in educational systems and responsive action planning to be implemented by the school and in each teacher’s daily planning and work. 

    Did you know that KCSD Librarians are bringing updated resources into our school libraries to combat racial and cultural inequities?

    Librarians in every KCSD school have been working hard to eliminate books from our shelves that have negative racial and cultural connotations. They are bringing in updated resources – both in print and online – that reflect our diverse school and community population.

    Did you know that the KCSD Board of Education is reviewing district policies and considering language to improve upon and further address the issues of equity, inclusivity, and diversity in education?

    #0050: Statements of Vision, Mission and Core Values

    • Changing language to include inclusive working and learning environments, equity of access for all, elimination of biases and how equity and access is impacted

     #4200:  Curriculum Development and Adoption

    • Adding language to include culturally responsive instructional practices, curriculum, and assessments.

     #4511:  Selection and Use of Instructional Materials

    • Includes language in reference to instructional methods consistent with the district curriculum which reflects the district’s diversity in race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, etc.

     #9240: Recruiting and Hiring

    • The KCSD Board is committed to attracting candidates from all racial and ethnic backgrounds, including candidates who are linguistically diverse and culturally competent, for administrative, instructional, and support personnel positions.

    The Kingston City School District understands that there is more to school than just academics and is committed to the education of the whole child. Culturally and linguistically responsive practices are just one piece of the puzzle. Social-Emotional Learning (SEL), Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS), Trauma-Informed Teaching, Restorative Practices and school-community-family partnerships all play an important role in providing a well-rounded educational experience.

    The District has made efforts over the years towards equity and inclusivity for all students. KCSD will continue its efforts to eliminate racial disproportionality and support initiatives to provide equity in everything the district does for its students and families.