Creating Meaningful Conversations at North Colonie School District

Situation or Challenge

 The Deputy Superintendent indicated that they had hired a person to do equity work and the session went sideways. The teachers left the session expressing the following, “The leadership think we are racist.” 


We used the text, “Why Are All The Black Children Sitting Together in The Cafeteria” by Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum to ground the conversation. We met with over 200 educators in the district using the book study model for 20 hours and then we had 2.5 days of training on the following: Microaggressions/Implicit Bias, Stratification and Socialization, Race and Ethnicity as well as we set the framework as a journey and not a destination. 


The solution in anti-racism work is to challenge assumptions daily and ask questions often. 


  • Hired BIPOC in clusters instead of token BIPOC person 
  •  Changed the manner in the way hiring was done from a ranking to a holistic system and made more language more inclusive 
  • People expressed once they completed training, their entire way of seeing privilege and race had a 360-degree turn.
  •  Staff felt more empowered to speak up when they witnessed white supremacy culture playing out in the district. 
  • Educators started to complete more book studies that were connected to race and apply to daily instruction.
Scroll to top