At the February 14, 2023, meeting of the the Culver City Unified School District’s board of education, trustees voted unanimously in favor of the Black Student Achievement Plan Resolution. The resolution aims to address opportunity gaps that have long hindered African American/Black students in the school district.
The resolution acknowledges the school district’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion and the need to ensure that all students develop strong academic knowledge, skills, and dispositions to prepare them for life beyond their secondary school years. The resolution specifically notes that the school district has approximately 7,100 enrolled students, of which 12.64 percent identify as African American/Black. These African American/Black students in the school district have historically faced institutional racism and systemic bias, leading to high rates of disproportionate discipline, crippling low expectations of African American/Black intellectual and academic ability, and a lack of respect, trust, and collaboration between the CCUSD and African American/Black families and the community.
On social media, School Board Member Triston Ezidore, the Board’s only Black member, and the first Black male to serve on the body notes that, “For the first time in our district’s history, we stand with actionable plans to be unequivocal about our Black kids. This is an important step towards addressing the institutional racism and systemic bias that have historically and currently placed structural barriers before African American/Black students.
“I am pleased that the Culver City Unified School District is acknowledging the opportunity gaps that have led to over half of CCUSD African American/Black students not meeting the state’s English Language Arts standard and three-quarters of African American/Black students not meeting the math standard. The plan’s initiatives will ensure that all African American/Black students can attain their fullest potential as learners and succeed academically, socially, and emotionally.”
This resolution directs the Superintendent and Assistant Superintendent of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Dr. Jennifer Smith, to submit a full African American/Black Student Achievement Plan for the Board to adopt by May 2023, and put into effect for the 2023-24 school year.
The resolution also mandates the creation of a Superintendent’s DEI Student Advisory Committee, which will
include a significant portion of Black student voices.
The Culver City Unified School District’s Black Student Achievement Plan Resolution is a vital step in addressing opportunity gaps and promoting the success of African American/Black students.