The advancing equity grant is focused on advancing equity within educator preparation programs and colleges of education. The grant is designed to address persistent inequities in Washington’s P-12 education system and educator preparation programs.
PESB is committed to upholding Washington’s standards for educator preparation programs and cultural responsiveness (PDF) to ensure all educators are prepared to recognize diversity as an asset and build upon students’ diverse strengths. This includes students of Color, those living in poverty, students with disabilities, English learners (ELs), and LGBTQ students and families. PESB strives for all teacher candidates to engage in a preparation experience that advances racial equity for both the candidate and their future students. Doing so requires productive collaboration between community partners and the P-12 education system.
Grant cycle 2021-23
The 2021-23 advancing equity grant cycle is currently in progress.
Address persistent inequities in Washington’s P-12 education system and educator preparation programs.
Grantees are PESB-approved educator preparation programs who demonstrate institutional commitment to implementing strategies that achieve bold goals in the grant priority areas:
- Use an equity mindset to initiate new or substantively transform policies, practices, or procedures in program design.
- Build leadership capacity for planning, enacting, and assessing equity-minded initiatives.
- Examine teacher candidate assessments using case-by-case exceptions on content knowledge assessments or the use of multiple measures regarding performance on the edTPA.
- Include teacher candidates, educators, and community members as partners in advancing equity.
Grantees engage in a community of practice where they participate in training, share and support each other in progress and learnings, and form an active network of preparation programs focused on advancing equity in the education profession. Grantees’ work will inform broader knowledge and skills that lead to advancing racial equity in Washington’s educator preparation system. This grant supports capacity-building for grantees to develop a sustainable infrastructure that can be maintained beyond the grant period.
In addition to quarterly financial and progress reports, grantees are required to develop and share usable tools or artifacts, a publishable manuscript, and two professional presentations of learning. The presentations will take place at the end of year one and at the end of the grant cycle, and will give grantees the opportunity to share their learnings and progress with the broader field and stakeholder community.
Grantees will implement their proposals using equity-based assessment measures and practices that show potential to dramatically and sustainably advance educational equity and diversify the educator workforce. Grantees will create a venue to share resources and promising practices aligned with program and cultural competency standards.
Antioch University Seattle | School of Education Alternative Route to Teacher Certification MAT
- Project title: Rethinking program leadership through community partnerships
- Project lead: Dr. Rachel Oppenheim, Director and Core Faculty, School of Education
- Project description: Antioch University is working to expand the role of the Committee of Community Advisors (CCA) in their teacher preparation programs. Collaboration with the CCA grew out of their initial 2018-20 advancing equity grant. With this new grant, faculty hope to co-construct a new capstone experience with the CCA that will better prepare candidates to disrupt opportunity gaps in schools and work as equity-focused partners with families and communities. This new capstone experience focuses specifically on partnerships with community-based organizations and families, and CCA members would work as co-instructors (alongside Antioch faculty) to lead capstone courses. This intensive focus on the capstone experience will allow the CCA’s leadership to permeate all aspects of Antioch’s teacher preparation programs and lead to sustainable transformation within the institution.
Central Washington University | School of Education Teach STEM
- Project title: Advancing equity in STEM preservice teacher education through program assessment and transformation
- Project lead: Dr. Jennifer Dechaine, Department Chair of Science and Mathematics Education (SMED), Co-Director of CWU Teach STEM, Professor of SMED and Biology
- Project description: There is a need for more culturally competent science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) teachers, however, few STEM content-specific equity resources exist for preservice teacher education. In response to this need, Central Washington University is developing an assessment resource to enact equity-driven changes throughout the CWU Teach STEM program. The goals of this grant are to: 1) create a tool to assess culturally sustaining pedagogies in the context of STEM preservice education; 2) apply the tool to assess Teach STEM policy, curriculum, culture, and praxis and use these data to enact strategic program changes; and 3) provide professional development around program change areas to the Working Group of Teach STEM faculty, students, and community partners who will be implementing the change. The desired outcomes of this work are equity-driven change at one of Washington State’s largest STEM preservice education programs, and to provide needed tools toward improving cultural competence in future STEM teachers.
Columbia Basin College | Early Childhood Education and Teacher Education programs
- Project title: Teaching teachers: advancing equity through faculty language acquisition and literacy training
- Project lead: Dr. Monica Hansen, Dean for Social Science and Education
- Project description: Through this grant, Columbia Basin College will provide Guided Language Acquisition Design (GLAD) professional development to sixteen faculty members, training that helps faculty to implement inclusive language and literacy strategies in their classrooms. A significant number of Columbia Basin’s Early Childhood Education and Teacher Education students are English language learners who encounter barriers to comprehension in English-dominant classrooms. Instructional practices that account for the language and literacy needs of English language learners help eliminate opportunity gaps within the education system and increase students’ capacity to successfully complete their certificate or degree program. Columbia Basin is invested in providing a supply of skilled graduates to meet the region’s high workforce demands. Studying under GLAD-trained instructors will provide candidates with a model for implementing inclusive language and literacy strategies in their own classrooms.
Gonzaga University | Department of Teacher Education
- Project title: Community Language & Language Acquisition
- Project lead: Dr. Anny Fritzen Case, Associate Professor, Director of Secondary Education
- Project description: Gonzaga University will redesign the Community Languages and Language Acquisition teacher certification course with the aim of cultivating critical consciousness in preservice teachers and empathy for English language learners and Native students. The new curriculum will give an authentic language-learning experience as context for candidates’ exploration of concepts and practices in English Language Learner (ELL) education. Candidates will explore how language shapes cultural worldviews and identities and interrogate the assumptions of Whiteness that permeate language acquisition and teaching methodologies in U.S schools. Gonzaga will collaborate with partners from the Salish-speaking and Marshallese communities in curricular transformation. Grant funds will be used to hire Salish and Marshallese language teachers and facilitate sustained community dialogue and course development.
Northwest University | College of Education
- Project title: Early Indicators as a Means of Proactively Supporting Candidates of Color through Multiple Measures of Alternative Assessments
- Project lead: Dr. Jeremy Delamarter, Associate Professor and edTPA Coordinator
- Project description: Northwest University will focus the grant project’s research on the use of multiple measures of assessment as an intervention for candidate growth and as an alternative to the edTPA, particularly for candidates of Color. The project team will study how early indicators of concern (e.g., poor performance in early coursework) might be used to design and implement proactive interventions (e.g., video recorded TPEP-model debriefs) that would serve as developmental support in building edTPA skills, as well as documentation to be used in multiple measures assessment should the candidate not pass the edTPA. Research will consist of case studies of at least four partner-district candidates over a two-year period. Interventions will be designed and implemented jointly by the program and the district. This research has the potential to merge theory and practice, and to illuminate promising practices for the use of case-by-case exceptions to edTPA requirements.
Pierce College | BAS-T Education program
- Project title: Advancing Equity Grant: Teacher Academy to Teachers Equity Pipeline
- Project lead: Davida Sharpe-Haygood, Interim Director of Education
- Project description: Pierce College, in partnership with Puyallup School District, will analyze current course content in the high school teacher academy program and education career pathway, and develop future teacher training from the perspective of Critical Race Theory (CRT). The goals of the project are to increase the representation of teachers of Color in Pierce College’s teacher preparation program, as well as enhance instructional content to reflect and deepen candidates’ understanding of how to be an anti-racist educator. Additionally, the project team aims to examine advising practices in the school district to improve recruitment of students of Color into a predominately white teacher academy program. The grant team will work with high school teachers, Puyallup and Pierce administration, and Pierce faculty in a professional learning community to collaboratively align anti-racist teachings along candidates’ pathway to teacher certification.
Seattle University | College of Education MiT program
- Project title: Collectivized Teacher-Led Spaces to Empower and Support BIPOC Equity Educators
- Project lead: Dr. Kerry Soo Von Esch, Program Director and Assistant Professor, Educating Non-Native English Speakers
- Project description: The importance of recruiting and retaining teachers of Color to diversify the educator workforce and increase educational equity for students of Color has been well-established. While efforts have focused on recruitment, less focus has been given to retaining and supporting BIPOC (Black, Indigineous, People of Color) teachers. Seattle University’s grant project addresses this gap by creating a generative, BIPOC teacher-activist driven space to support and build the capacity of teachers of Color as they both individually and collectively address issues of racial equity and social justice in their classrooms, schools, and districts. Through twelve monthly teacher convenings, this project will realize the following goals: (1) to advance equity in education by centering the work and experiences of educators of Color; and (2) to institutionalize professional development models, such as the teacher-activist of Color space, that support the retention, professional growth, and identity development of teachers of Color.
St. Martin’s University | College of Education and Counseling, Education Department
- Project title: Leading for Equity
- Project lead: Dr. Linda Maier, Education Department Chair, Associate Professor Director, School Administration Program
- Project description: St. Martin’s University will develop and provide professional development for education field supervisors in partnership with school district leaders, the regional Educational Service District (ESD), and the Association of Washington School Principals (AWSP). This professional development will equip supervisors and leaders to identify culturally responsive instruction that advances or inhibits equity teaching practices. The project scope includes training for supervisors and mentors working with interns in addressing oversight and execution of equity policies and instruction. It offers strategies to establish productive supervisory working relationships with staff, parents, and community members to use an equity lens in all areas. The result will be field supervisors and evaluators who have the tools to support their evaluation of interns in a holistic manner, considering the classroom, culture, and community. Leading for Equity aims to advance each partner’s specific equity focus in a collaborative and synergistic manner.
The Evergreen State College | MiT Graduate Education program
- Project title: Developing an Equity-Centered Partner School Network
- Project lead: Dr. Michael Bowman, Member of the Faculty
- Project description: The Evergreen State College will support curriculum transformation within the MiT program. Evergreen is striving to forge stronger connections and feedback loops between coursework and the education field. Grant funds will be used to develop an emergent and expansive community of practice around equity work at five local partner schools to inform curriculum development. This community of practice will bring together MiT faculty, MiT teacher candidates, partner school faculty, families, and local community mentors to plan, implement, and assess school-based equity work. Initial meetings with school principals point to the project including tools for curriculum review, support for anti-racist community rights, and materials for racial-ethnic-cultural-gender identity development in existing Social Emotional Learning curriculum.
University of Puget Sound | School of Education MAT program
- Project title: Developing Racial Equity Leadership Across Pre-service and In-service Educator Contexts
- Project lead: Dr. Amy E. Ryken, Executive Leadership Dean, MAT Program Leader
- Project description: The University of Puget Sound MAT program will partner with Tacoma Public Schools, Vibrant Schools Tacoma, African American Studies, and the Race & Pedagogy Institute to co-plan monthly professional development sessions addressing culturally responsive and anti-racist teaching to develop racial equity leadership among pre-service and in-service teachers. These ongoing and regular sessions will collaboratively engage pre-service and in-service teachers in a shared educational setting to develop language and frameworks for equity work. By co-planning professional development sessions, UPS will develop a sustainable infrastructure for collaborative work beyond the grant. This project provides an opportunity for the MAT program and partners to work across systems, deepen existing partnerships, and develop teams of equity educators who are prepared to engage others in equity work.
Walla Walla University | School of Education and Psychology, Teacher Education program
- Project title: Growing Together: Developing Culturally Responsive Teaching and Learning Practices with Teacher Candidates and Local Educators
- Project lead: Dr. Maria Bastien Valenca, Assistant Professor, School of Education and Psychology
- Project description: Through engagement with teacher candidates, local educators, and community members, Walla Walla University acknowledges the need for intentional training and practice opportunities in culturally responsive teaching and learning for teacher candidates, including planning, implementation, and assessment. Through this grant, Walla Walla will promote equity in professional development for cultural competence, including anti-racist and anti-bias practices, as well as support for English language learners and students with special needs. This includes the use of evaluative practices to review teaching and learning strategies, curriculum, and other materials for cultural appropriateness. The project team will work with local educators and teacher candidates during their junior and senior year field placement experience to focus specifically on the design and implementation of culturally responsive teaching and learning. With support from a local educator and Walla Walla faculty, candidates will engage in reflective practice and receive feedback specific to cultural competence.
Grant amounts vary, but the maximum award amount is $25,000.
This is a 2.5-year grant.
|August 17, 2020||Announcement: Advancing equity grant 2021-23 RFP (PDF)|
|September 18, 2020||Informational webinar: View the webinar recording (video).|
|January 29, 2021||First grantee meeting|
The purpose of the 2018-20 advancing equity grant was to increase equity in educator preparation programs across the state and inform policy connected to cultural responsiveness and equity. The grant supported PESB-approved educator preparation programs to do transformational work connected to racial equity, community engagement, and cultural responsiveness.
Grant cycle 2018-20 projects
Antioch University | School of Education
Create a Committee of Community Advisors (CCA) to guide the Antioch MAT program toward policy and procedural shifts that promote a vision of racial equity and social justice to better reflect the wisdom of local and regional communities of Color.
Central Washington University | School of Education
Design and implement an equity vision and action plan for CWU’s school of education. Support the institution to deeply reflect on the effectiveness of current institutional practices around racial equity and identify challenges and opportunities to better support teachers of Color.
Eastern Washington University | Department of Education
Build on the equity pedagogy work initiated by the 2016-17 “special projects” grant through EWU’s alternative routes program. Administer and analyze data from an equity pedagogy survey for teacher candidates and faculty. Embed equity pedagogy systemically in coursework.
St. Martin’s University | Teacher and School Administration Programs
Develop sustainable strategies to support racial equity in teacher administration preparation programs. Build campus efforts to support access and inclusion of all students.
University of Puget Sound | School of Education
Center race and unlearning racism in teacher preparation curriculum. Reposition the UPS school of education in relation to local communities. Actively rethink pedagogical coursework and school-based placements. Partner with African American Studies, Race and Pedagogy Institute, and Vibrant Schools.
University of Washington – Seattle | College of Education
Advance racial equity and disability justice by promoting curricular change in special education teacher preparation programs. Foster collaborative partnerships between Seattle Public Schools (SPS) and the UW SPED-TEP program. Prepare special education teachers for the full range of student diversity in today’s schools.
Washington State University- Tri-Cities | Education Programs
Build faculty capacity to develop and demonstrate inclusive and responsive instructional practices that retain a diverse teaching workforce. Prepare preservice teachers to work in increasingly diverse classrooms.
Walla Walla University | School of Education and Psychology
Increase program access in order to better recruit and retain teacher candidates of Color. Use one-on-one and community-based recruiting through the Center for Education Equity and Diversity (CEED) alongside broader recruiting efforts of the university.
Western Washington University | Woodring College of Education
Revise, expand, and refine a college equity plan to coordinate efforts to recruit and retain students of Color. Develop a network of professionals committed to developing and enacting the equity plan.
In 2016, PESB funded several “special project” grants that focused on supporting preparation programs with promising practices in recruiting and retaining a diverse candidate pool. PESB used learnings from these grants to inform the design of the 2018-20 advancing equity grant (previously called the “Pilot to policy: advancing systemic equity grant”). This two-year grant awarded educator preparation programs up to $10,000/year to develop and pilot equity action plans at their institutions. The application process took place during fall 2017, and grantees conducted their work from January 2018 to December 2020 (extended due to COVID-19).
Grantees participated in a workgroup that met on a monthly and bi-monthly basis over the course of the two-year grant period. They attended trainings, shared learning, provided feedback, reported on progress, and served as a collective committed to demonstrating results and best practices around advancing equity in the educator workforce. Grantees were required at the end of each year to track and assess results connected to implementing new practices. The workgroup’s report-outs were expected to inform broader policy through PESB’s new program review model. Grant funds were used to support the implementation of new practices, as well as participation in workgroup meetings.