Applying the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion when creating educational content ensures that all students have educational materials to which they can relate and through which they can develop empathy for others. Westchester Education Services can support publishers and ed tech companies by performing Culturally Responsive Education reviews. These reviews can help education companies ensure that their content meets the standards of inclusion and equity.
This work encompasses three important components:
- Our proven Culturally Responsive Education (CRE) rubric
- Our diverse and experienced review teams
- Our collaborative processes
The Culturally Responsive Education Rubric
Our proven CRE rubric is the centre of this work. This rubric draws from the best practices of educational, academic, and library anti-bias and culturally responsible programmes. Our diverse and experienced review team uses this rubric to provide thorough feedback for any given programme, highlighting its strengths, weaknesses, and omissions. Our reviewers use the rubric as a tool to document any issues with problematic language, coverage, viewpoints, and representation, providing suggestions to maximize inclusivity.
The Diverse and Experienced Review Teams
Nilofer Ali, the head of our diversity, equity, and inclusivity committee, works to ensure that each review team represents a broad range of perspectives. In this role, Nilofer leans into her experience as an educator, community leader, DEI advocate, and draws from her successful completion of the Yale School of Management Fostering Inclusion and Diversity programme. Each review team includes educators whose experiences are culturally diverse, mirroring the experiences of many current students. In addition, review teams include experts who have worked with schools and educational content providers to create rich and impactful CRE programmes. We customize each review team based on the material and content for the project.
The Culturally Responsive Education Review Process
Our end-to-end CRE Review process consists of four steps. However, customers can opt for an à la carte approach if they prefer to make content adjustments themselves.
Step 1: Calibration
Team members independently review a thin slice of the content, which is generally a unit or small subset of lessons. As a team, they meet to review their findings, discussing and adjusting for any outlier findings. Then, the team meets with the customer to review their analysis. This step may include a discussion of any global concerns identified during this calibration step.
Step 2: Full Review
At this stage, the team begins the full review of the content, applying the analysis from the calibration stage. They meet regularly to discuss findings to ensure that they remain calibrated. A member of the project team provides scheduling oversight to ensure that the project stays on track. At the end of this phase, the review team presents the completed rubric and meets with the customer to walk through the details of the report. The customer can complete their project at the end of this step or opt to continue with Step 3 and/or Step 4.
Step 3: Content Adjustment
At Step 2, we present comprehensive and actionable feedback to our customers. If they choose, they can elect to have our subject matter teams work in tandem with their team to make the requisite content adjustments. This stage is often handled as a separate statement of work. We can provide quotes for this stage as we finish Stage 2 (once the full scope of the fixes is known). Read more about our content development approach here.
Step 4: Final Review
After Step 3, if a customer chooses to do so, they can continue with our CRE review team to provide a final review of the adjusted content. This final review ensures that all the intended changes were accurately and appropriately implemented.
Westchester is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion within our own company. We are honoured to help our customers in ed tech and educational publishing with their Culturally Responsive Education review projects. We welcome you to visit our DEI Blog or to review our DEI resource library for more information about DEI in education.