UNC Greensboro will partner with University of Kansas SWIFT Education Center and Cumberland County Schools to support the development of Equity Leaders through the SWIFT Education Center Equity Leadership program.
These efforts are being led by Dr. Kimberly Kappler Hewitt — Director of Principal Preparation for Excellence and Equity in Rural Schools (PPEERS) at the School of Education — and leadership coaches Dr. Nancy Barbour (Director of NCDPI), Dr. Mark Rumley (Assistant Director of PPEERS), and Dr. Monica Smith-Woofter (previous Superintendent of Northampton County Schools).
Hewitt, Barbour, Rumley, and Smith-Woofter will work with administrators and teacher leaders from selected schools in Cumberland County to build leadership capacity for equity. The project will leverage multi-tiered systems of support to meet the needs of all students in ways that disrupt inequities often experienced by students of color, students experiencing poverty, and students who are differently abled.
“Standards, quality curricula, and strong pedagogy — while necessary — are not sufficient to close the opportunity gaps that burden many students,” states Hewitt. “It is only by disrupting inequities that all students can flourish. This partnership does the important work of building leadership capacity to rework schools to be places where equitable practices become part of the culture and all students can indeed flourish.”
Over five years, leadership teams from three cohorts of schools in Cumberland County will engage in staggered two-year journeys through the SWIFT Education Center Equity Leadership Program. The program includes a series of two-day trainings and on-site coaching by the SWIFT and UNCG teams.
Research conducted on the program implementation and impact will be used to inform future equity-oriented leadership development. “What we learn from this project can inform our own leadership preparation programs at UNCG,” Hewitt explains. “It’s exciting that our students will benefit from what we learn from this partnership work with SWIFT and Cumberland.”
Learn more about the Swift Education Center here.