It is recognized that many of the terms below have multiple definitions and interpretations. As we proceed with this relevant and impactful work, It is important to establish a shared understanding and interpretation of the specific terms utilized within our Equity Work.
Level of identity that is the real, true, genuine substance of who a person is; who the person is at their absolute core; the part of an individual that is not defined by external sources, pressures and/or “expectations”; knowing one’s authentic self is an ongoing process of self- reflection, exploration, challenge, new insights, and personal and professional growth.
The physical sex characteristics you’re born with and develop, including genitalia, body shape, voice pitch, body hair, hormones, chromosomes, etc.
The unfavorable judgment or evaluation of one group and its members relative to another.; expressed directly/explicitly:
Conscious- Person is aware of his/her evaluation or judgment and believes it is true or accurate.
Unconscious- Person doesn’t perceive or endorse the evaluation or judgment; Person is not aware of the consequences of unfavorable judgment, but unconsciously perpetuates that thinking. Person is not aware of societal influences on his/her judgment or evaluation and internalizes social stereotypes in their thinking.
A set of values, behaviors, attitudes, and practices within a system, organization, program or among individuals and which enables them to work effectively cross-culturally. An ability to reflect on experiences with diverse cultures to demonstrate knowledge and sensitivity. An ability or willingness to purposefully engage with others and create an environment for productive and respectful relations with others.
Being or creating an environment that acknowledges, respects, values, and embraces diverse cultures. The perspectives and contributions of each individual, including their diversity are embraced and valued. In an inclusive environment, people of all cultural orientations can: freely express who they are, their own opinions and points of view; fully participate in teaching, learning, work, and social activities; feel safe from conscious or unconscious mistreatment, harassment or unfair criticism.
Culturally Responsive Teaching
Using cultural characteristics, experiences, and perspectives of ethnically diverse students as a conduit for teaching them more effectively. It is based on the assumption that when academic knowledge and skills are situated within the lived experiences and frames of reference of students, they are more personally meaningful, have higher interest appeal and are learned more easily and thoroughly.
A shared, learned system consisting of patterns of traditions, beliefs, values, norms, attitudes, meanings and symbols that shapes and influences one’s perceptions, behaviors and interaction patterns in the world; passed on from one generation to the next and are shared to varying degrees by interacting members of a community; ways of thinking, knowing and being in the world.
The unjust or prejudicial treatment (intentionally or unintentionally) of different categories of people based on membership in a particular social group (e.g., race, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, religion, social class, etc. . .)
Individual- The behavior of individual members of a particular social group that has an intended or unintended, differential and/or harmful effect on members of another social group.
Institutional- The unjust and discriminatory mistreatment of an individual or group of individuals by society and its institutions as a whole, through unequal selection or bias, intentional or unintentional; built into the normal working relationships of institutions, its perpetuation requires only that people continue "business as usual." Its eradication requires much more than goodwill; it requires an active review of the assumptions and practices by which the institution operates and revision of those found to have discriminatory results.
Structural- Practices, norms and behaviors within institutions and social structures which have the effect of denying rights or opportunities to members of minority groups, keeping them from achieving the same opportunities available to the majority group. Structural discrimination can occur both intentionally and unintentionally. The term is also used in relation to more informal practices that have become embedded in everyday organizational life and effectively become part of the system, “how we do things around here.”
The inclusion of different types of people (as people of different races or cultures) in a group or organization.
Eliminate educational barriers based on gender, race/ethnicity, national origin, color, disability, age, or other protected group status; and provide equal educational opportunities and ensure that historically underserved or underrepresented populations meet the same rigorous standards for academic performance expected of all children and youth; ensure that all students have access to resources and learning; identify the intended learning outcomes and eliminating barriers for some to promote the success of all.
The quality or state of being equal: the quality or state of having the same rights, social status, etc.
Fairness or justice in the way people are treated; fairness achieved through systematically assessing and addressing disparities in opportunities and outcomes.
Consciously consider equity (fairness) as we evaluate view opportunities and outcomes.
Affiliation or identity within a group of people bound by common ancestry and culture.
The combination of relatives that comprise a family; may include but is not be limited to: families with two parents/guardians (different gender, same gender), single parent/guardian, blended families, multi-generational households and/or adult siblings sharing a home.
The attitudes, feelings, and behaviors that a given culture associates with a person’s biological sex. Behavior that is compatible with cultural expectations is referred to as gendernormative; behaviors that are viewed as incompatible with these expectations constitute gender non-conformity.
The way in which a person acts to communicate gender within a given culture; for example, in terms of clothing, communication patterns, and interests. A person’s gender expression may or may not be consistent with socially prescribed gender roles, and may or may not reflect his or her gender identity.
Each person’s deeply felt internal and individual experience of gender, which may or may not correspond with the sex assigned at birth, including the personal sense of the body and other expressions of gender, including dress, speech, and mannerisms.
A special right or benefit that is given to some people and not to others. The benefits of access and social rewards which some receive, unconsciously and consciously, by virtue of their “location” in society.
A social construct that artificially divides people into distinct groups based on certain characteristics such as physical appearance (particularly skin color) ancestral heritage, cultural affiliation, cultural history, ethnic classification...Racial categories subsume ethnic groups.
The result of people of targeted racial groups believing, acting on, or enforcing the dominant system of beliefs about themselves and members of their own racial group; The systemic subordination of members of targeted racial groups who have relatively little social power in the United States; This subordination is supported by the actions of individuals, cultural norms and values, and the institutional structures and practices of society; prejudice plus power equals racism.
Approaches utilized to enact the process of involving, to the extent possible, those who have a stake in a specific offense and to collectively identify and address harms, needs, and obligations, in order to heal and put things as right as possible; restore relationships and community; Restorative questions: What happened? Who has been affected and how? How do we make things right?
The behavioral aesthetic, and psychological characteristics by which a person communicates their identities. One’s self-expression may or may not conform to cultural expectations and may challenge stereotypical roles.
An enduring pattern of emotional, romantic or sexual attraction (or a combination of these) to persons of the opposite sex or gender, the same sex or gender, or to both sexes or more than one gender.
Plays out and can be analyzed at every level of social organization, from the most individual and personal, to the most abstract and societal. These terms refer to the levels of social organization at which inequality is maintained and reproduced.
An oversimplified or overgeneralized conception, opinion, or image about certain groups of people. A quick way to describe a whole group of people by emphasizing just a few characteristics. It is problematic because it reduces complex human diversity to simple assumptions and perpetuates social prejudice and inequality. Stereotypes are often used to favor certain groups over others. It reflects social values and judgments that certain groups are less valued and desired. Stereotypes are demeaning, devaluing, limiting and hurtful to people being stereotyped. “Power” plays a role in creating and reproducing stereotypes; stereotypes disempower the groups being stereotyped and they have little to say about how they are represented. This way stereotypes reproduce unfair power dynamics and naturalize prejudices.