Education Trust Annual Bootcamp Inspires Advocates for Equity

The Education Trust recently held its bi-annual equity boot camp, geared towards supporting advocates and partners in the work for education equity.

The theme of this meeting was Equity Matters: Education Equity in the COVID-19 Era, focusing on research, policy and advocacy that tackle the pressing issues students are facing during an ongoing, dual-pandemic.

Beginning with a powerful musical performance from a college student in Nashville, TN, our national and state partners and advocates, including more than 30 participants from Michigan, gathered virtually through a series of plenaries, breakout sessions and networking opportunities in order to build their knowledge and skill for moving education equity forward.

The plenaries highlighted those in the field who are innovating in equity during this time of uncertainty, a critical conversation around equity and curriculum, a fireside chat with Massachusetts Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, and an inspiring closing call to action from our President and CEO, Dr. John B. King, Jr.

Participants heard from teachers, parents, school and district leaders, and students who are pushing the work of education equity, as well as learned from experts who shared their research and explored critical questions in education during our breakout sessions.

Members of the Michigan contingent came away excited about what they experienced.

“Ed Trust’s bootcamp, although virtual, exceeded my expectations,” said Alice Thompson, CEO, BFDI Educational Services, Inc. and former CEO, Black Family Development, Inc. in Detroit. “The power-packed two days provided a treasure chest of dynamic speakers, ideas, practices, strategies and recommendations that have empowered and equipped me to put ideas into practice and to scale up my advocacy work on behalf of educational equity.”

Topics explored during the breakout sessions included: race-conscious policy in higher education, creative advocacy efforts during the time of COVID-19, racial equity in social, emotional and academic development and much more!

“This was my first EdTrust boot camp, and I appreciated the passion that vividly though virtually shined through,” said Amy Moore, Vice President of Evaluation and Grantee Capacity, Community Foundation for Muskegon County. “I walked away questioning the “system” of education; and how we should be advocating for the equity in education as a workforce. Philanthropy can play a role by developing programs that inspire, support and increase the number of teachers of color. I look forward to taking on this work with my fellow boot camp graduates!”

Ed Trust Launches “Justice Fellows Policy Program”

Over the years, The Education Trust has been an active participant in federal advocacy efforts to lift the ban on Pell Grants for students who are incarcerated. The next stage of this work includes the launch of Ed Trust’s Justice Fellows Policy Program. This program’s goal is to create a vibrant and nurturing community of directly impacted, formerly incarcerated individuals, who share a passion for learning more about higher education policy.

The Education Trust will invite six individuals who are formerly incarcerated or directly impacted to serve as Justice Fellows for the inaugural cohort. People who have been incarcerated or are directly impacted include those who have been confined in a jail, prison, or detention camp, those with arrests and/or convictions but no incarceration, and those with only a juvenile record.

These Justice Fellows will use their experience and hard-earned expertise to inform, review, amplify, and reflect on policy recommendations for justice-impacted students. Additionally, Justice Fellows will inform and guide Ed Trust’s structured engagements and convenings at the intersection of higher education policy and the criminal legal system.

If you are interested in applying or know someone who may be interested, please review the eligibility requirements and expectations, and submit your application by November 23, 2020.

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