Belonging and Inclusion in Identity Safe Schools

A Guide for Educational Leaders

$32.95

8 in stock

SKU: D423-Net

Lead an identity safe learning community where students of all backgrounds thrive.

Students of all backgrounds reach their full potential when they feel a sense of belonging and inclusion. When their social identities are valued as assets rather than barriers to learning, they flourish. This guide provides evidence-based strategies that support you as a leader in creating an environment that promotes identity safe students, who experience a challenging curriculum that respects their diverse social identities.

Features in the book include:

  • Guiding principles for student voice, equalizing status and cultivating acceptance across race, ethnicity, gender and other differences
  • Ideas and examples for anti-racist dialogue and activities for teachers and students that counter colorblind practices, stereotype threat and biases
  • Vignettes, and examples of identity safe practices for students and adult learning for staff, families and the community
  • Systems for student-centered assessment and data collection
  • Resources for developing equitable school policies and a comprehensive identity safety plan for your school

Educators fulfill the promise of an equitable education when students of all backgrounds know that who they are and what they think matters. Start the journey to become an identity safe school and see the results for yourself!

Written by Becki Cohn-Vargas, Alexandrea Creer Kahn, Amy Epstein, Kathe Gogolewski
Paperback ISBN 9781071835838
Grades K-12
304 pages
Release Date September 8, 2021

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Kathe Gogolewski

Kathe Gogolewski, MAed, taught science as well as first, third, and fourth grades in Bay Area elementary schools, serving culturally rich and racially diverse students from all backgrounds. During her tenure, she worked as both a master and mentor teacher, working with new teachers and new teacher candidates in both classroom management and curriculum. She provided teachers with a framework for creating nurturing classrooms that welcomed students of all identities and backgrounds. She taught at California State University in the teacher credential program and has presented at workshops and conferences across the United States. Since moving to San Diego, Kathe supports and volunteers for various nonprofits, including Embracing the World, serving populations in need across the globe; San Diego Rapid Response Network, creating safe spaces for refugees and people seeking asylum; and Casa de Amparo, providing care for children before their placement into foster care. She has worked as a volunteer science and language arts teacher in the Vista, Carlsbad, and San Diego Unified School Districts. She has published a children’s book, Tato, and a number of children’s short stories, all with themes that support and foster compassion toward oneself and others. A transplant from the Bay Area, she lives now in San Diego, with her husband, Ray. They have four children and seven grandchildren.

Becki Cohn-Vargas, EdD, spent over 35 years as a teacher, principal, curriculum director, and superintendent in rural, urban, and suburban districts. In each setting, she focused on educational equity and strategies for diverse populations. When she learned about research on identity safety classrooms where teachers strive to assure students that their social identities are an asset rather than a barrier to success in the classroom, it became her educational mission. Partnering with Dorothy Steele, identity safety researcher, she coauthored “Identity Safe Classrooms: Places to Belong and Learn,” aimed at K–5 teachers. Subsequently, she co-authored “Identity Safe Classrooms Grades 6–12: Pathways to Belonging and Learning”, and “Belonging and Inclusion in Identity Safe Schools: A Guide for Educational Leaders.” Currently, Becki is an independent consultant and presenter. She was hosted at the White House by President Obama’s education staff and has worked to create identity safe school climates in over 150 schools across the U.S.

Amy Epstein

Amy Epstein, MSW, is the founding partner of Data for the People, working to transform data into valued and accessible information centered in the knowledge and priorities of those closest to a context, problem, or goal. She has worked as an administrator and consultant with many school districts, schools, foundations, and other nonprofit organizations to advance equity in education, particularly in the areas of evidence-based inquiry and dialogue, coordinated services/tiered support systems, data systems and processes, and assessment. Amy was a coauthor in 2020 of Identity Safe Classrooms: Grades 6–12: Pathway to Belonging and Learning. Amy lives in San Francisco, CA, with her wife, Liat. She is anchored and made joyous by drumming, singing, meditating, and spending time outdoors.

Alexandrea Creer Kahn

Alexandrea Creer Kahn, MAed, after earning her BA at UC Berkeley and MA in Education from Stanford University, started her career in education, working to support elementary school teachers and leaders to engage in the school improvement process. Over the course of her career focusing on educational equity, Alex has worked in several roles in K–12 and higher-ed including teacher, school coach, principal, and district leader, as well as lecturer for Stanford University. Recently, Alex coauthored the book Identity Safe Classrooms: Grades 6–12: Pathway to Belonging and Learning. Alex currently oversees the clinical practicum program for Alder Graduate School of Education as the senior director of Academic Programs. Alex’s areas of expertise include school leadership, school transformation, teacher education, coaching, professional learning, and curriculum and instruction. A Bay Area native, Alex enjoys spending her time with her husband and two sons, writing, and spending time outdoors.

Kathe Gogolewski

Kathe Gogolewski, MAed, taught science as well as first, third, and fourth grades in Bay Area elementary schools, serving culturally rich and racially diverse students from all backgrounds. During her tenure, she worked as both a master and mentor teacher, working with new teachers and new teacher candidates in both classroom management and curriculum. She provided teachers with a framework for creating nurturing classrooms that welcomed students of all identities and backgrounds. She taught at California State University in the teacher credential program and has presented at workshops and conferences across the United States. Since moving to San Diego, Kathe supports and volunteers for various nonprofits, including Embracing the World, serving populations in need across the globe; San Diego Rapid Response Network, creating safe spaces for refugees and people seeking asylum; and Casa de Amparo, providing care for children before their placement into foster care. She has worked as a volunteer science and language arts teacher in the Vista, Carlsbad, and San Diego Unified School Districts. She has published a children’s book, Tato, and a number of children’s short stories, all with themes that support and foster compassion toward oneself and others. A transplant from the Bay Area, she lives now in San Diego, with her husband, Ray. They have four children and seven grandchildren.

Becki Cohn-Vargas, EdD, spent over 35 years as a teacher, principal, curriculum director, and superintendent in rural, urban, and suburban districts. In each setting, she focused on educational equity and strategies for diverse populations. When she learned about research on identity safety classrooms where teachers strive to assure students that their social identities are an asset rather than a barrier to success in the classroom, it became her educational mission. Partnering with Dorothy Steele, identity safety researcher, she coauthored “Identity Safe Classrooms: Places to Belong and Learn,” aimed at K–5 teachers. Subsequently, she co-authored “Identity Safe Classrooms Grades 6–12: Pathways to Belonging and Learning”, and “Belonging and Inclusion in Identity Safe Schools: A Guide for Educational Leaders.” Currently, Becki is an independent consultant and presenter. She was hosted at the White House by President Obama’s education staff and has worked to create identity safe school climates in over 150 schools across the U.S.

Amy Epstein

Amy Epstein, MSW, is the founding partner of Data for the People, working to transform data into valued and accessible information centered in the knowledge and priorities of those closest to a context, problem, or goal. She has worked as an administrator and consultant with many school districts, schools, foundations, and other nonprofit organizations to advance equity in education, particularly in the areas of evidence-based inquiry and dialogue, coordinated services/tiered support systems, data systems and processes, and assessment. Amy was a coauthor in 2020 of Identity Safe Classrooms: Grades 6–12: Pathway to Belonging and Learning. Amy lives in San Francisco, CA, with her wife, Liat. She is anchored and made joyous by drumming, singing, meditating, and spending time outdoors.

Alexandrea Creer Kahn

Alexandrea Creer Kahn, MAed, after earning her BA at UC Berkeley and MA in Education from Stanford University, started her career in education, working to support elementary school teachers and leaders to engage in the school improvement process. Over the course of her career focusing on educational equity, Alex has worked in several roles in K–12 and higher-ed including teacher, school coach, principal, and district leader, as well as lecturer for Stanford University. Recently, Alex coauthored the book Identity Safe Classrooms: Grades 6–12: Pathway to Belonging and Learning. Alex currently oversees the clinical practicum program for Alder Graduate School of Education as the senior director of Academic Programs. Alex’s areas of expertise include school leadership, school transformation, teacher education, coaching, professional learning, and curriculum and instruction. A Bay Area native, Alex enjoys spending her time with her husband and two sons, writing, and spending time outdoors.

$32.95

8 in stock

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