The U.S. Department of Education recently released its inaugural equity action plan to advance racial equity and support for underserved communities through the federal government.
The plan aligns with President Joe Biden’s executive order: Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities through the Federal Government.
The department’s equity action plan builds on processes in place and implements new strategies to ensure the advancement of equity to promote student achievement and to ensure the nation’s education system meets the demands of today’s global economy.
“Education has the power to bring the American Dream within reach of every individual, lift communities, draw people together, drive our economy, and meet our nation’s vast potential,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “We need to keep the focus on transforming our education system, so it truly expands opportunity for all students, no matter their race, background, zip code, age, or family’s income. Together, we must take bold action to ensure our nation’s schools are defined not by disparities, but by equity and excellence, especially as we recover from the pandemic and reemerge stronger than before.”
The department announced a series of plans to incorporate equity to meet the needs of every learner. These efforts include:
- Prioritizing access to and completion of an education beyond high school.
- Ensuring equitable impact of the American Rescue Plan’s $130 billion in funding for K-12 students.
- Investing in resources to advance civil rights.
- Advancing equity in contracting and procurement.
- Advancing equity in grant process strategies.
- Supporting America’s education system through the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Supporting schools with high-poverty rates to address opportunity and achievement gaps.
- Investing in educator recruitment and retention.
- Supporting higher education with pandemic relief funding.
- Advancing equity through Title IX.
- Supporting learners with disabilities.
- Supporting student loan borrowers.
- Focusing on equity as a priority of the administration.
Read the full action plan.