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The Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education

Educator Workforce Diversity Initiative: Update on Action Steps

Members of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
Mitchell D. Chester, Ed.D., Commissioner
December 5, 2014


At the meeting of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education on December 16, 2014, I will present a progress report on our Educator Workforce Diversity Initiative.


In June 2013, as part of Race To The Top (RTTT), the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education launched the Diversity Initiative to identify and promote effective strategies (1) to build the capacity of schools and districts to recruit and retain a diverse cadre of talented and qualified educator candidates and (2) to ensure that the Commonwealth's educators effectively work with students from diverse backgrounds. To do so, the Department convened a task force of stakeholders who are recognized as experts in education and/or diversity. The Massachusetts Advocates for Diversity in Education (MADE) met from June 2013 to January 2014. The charge of the task force was to serve as expert advisors and provide actionable recommendations that would:

  1. Increase the racial and ethnic diversity of the educator workforce; and
  2. Ensure the ability of educators to work effectively with students from diverse backgrounds.

In January 2014, MADE presented ten recommendations to the Department. In April 2014, I presented the Department's action plan to the Board Download Word Document.

Progress Report

At the December 16th meeting, I will provide an update to the Board on the Diversity Initiative. I have organized the update around three overarching strategies to provide a sense as to how we are moving forward to:

  • Increase the transparency of the data for MA educator preparation programs;
  • Develop the cultural proficiency of our current educator workforce; and
  • Decrease the disproportionate use of suspensions with students of color and develop positive school climates.

Heather Peske, Associate Commissioner for Educator Effectiveness, and Cynthia Mompoint, Project Lead and Liaison for the Diversity Task Force, will be at the meeting to assist in presenting this update as well as respond to your questions about the Diversity Initiative.


Download Word Document
Diversity Task Force Report
Download Word Document
Department's Action Plan in Response to the Diversity Task Force Recommendations

Last Updated: December 10, 2014
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