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EQUITY IN FOCUS

Antiracist SEL centers the comfort and needs of all students

By Angela M. Ward
August 2021
As educators responsible for the academic development of the students in our care, we must meet the needs of every young person, whether we personally identify with them or not. The first step is to frame social and emotional learning (SEL) from an antiracist lens that prioritizes community building, belongingness, and identity safety. Antiracist SEL centers the personal identity of each student in each teacher’s care. It is not a tool to deny white students identity safety but rather to offer that safety to everyone, including the children of color to whom it has long been denied. Centering the personal identity of each student does not mean the teacher creates a separate lesson plan for every student. It means the teacher uses differentiation, accommodations, and

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Angela M. Ward (angela@2wardequity.com) is founder and CEO of 2Ward Equity and a columnist for The Learning Professional.


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