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Diversity is More than Lip Service!: A Message to Cobb County School District, and All GA School Districts

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Dr. Burnett-Brown’s Proposed Diversity & Inclusion Initiative for CCSD vs. CCSD Current Cliché D&I Plan: Let’s Get Real With it Cobb County School District! As a former teacher in this system, and a mother to a child in the system, I am calling on all teachers, staff, parents, students and the various commuities impacted by Cobb County School District to call for action.

I, as a former CCSD teacher who was not respected for my differences, and who was constantly questioned regarding my athiesm, i.e., “If you do not beleive in God, how do you know to do the right thing?” Yes, I was asked this question by one of my principals. This is just one of the many ways my civil liberties were violated.

This plan calls for action and diveristy initiaves from the Top down, beginning with a Board that truly represents Cobb County School students and parents.  

Cobb County Parents and Community Members: Challenge CCSD to incorporate REAL actionable Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives and hold its principals accountable. 

Goal 1: To implement diversity & inclusion initiatives into the CC School District Schools to include all leadership, teachers, and staff.

Goal 1 sub-goals:

  • Hire a diversity & inclusion consultant to perform an evaluation of current diversity & inclusion status of district from the district office to the local schools.
  • Conduct external talent search for credentialed diversity & inclusion consultant/trainer to work at the district level office as an outsource to train district personnel.
  • Conduct internal and external talent search for credential diversity & inclusion director who will continue the D&I goals on an ongoing basis.
  • Leadership and management at the district level will work closely with D&I consultant with openness and transparency so that evaluation will garner the most authentic results.
  • HR will work closely with D&I consultant, district leadership, and principals from local schools to provide accurate data in order to garner the most authentic results.
  • District will recruit, hire, and retain teachers who are visually and culturally representative of the student body and community in which each school is located.

Goal 2: To increase diversity in district leadership and board members by 20% within two years.

Goal 2 sub-goals:

  • Create mission statement that integrates D&I goals at every level
  • Begin campaign to recruit diverse leadership
  • Invite community stake-holders to nominate or run for board membership with the stated goal in mind of having a board that is culturally reflective of all students and their families.

Goal 3. Develop and deliver ongoing diversity & inclusion training for leadership, principals, teachers, and all staff in the district office as well as in the local K-12 schools.

Goal 3 sub-goals:

  • Appoint designee at each local school who will report to principal who will then in turn report to diversity & inclusion director
  • Teachers, school counselors will receive initial and ongoing D&I training to include multicultural objectives for instruction.
  • All staff to include campus police, office personnel, custodial, cafeteria, substitute teachers, and community volunteers will receive initial and ongoing D&I training
  • Each local school will provide D&I lessons and activities to students, encourage support groups, and make D&I the objective for each day.
  • D&I initiatives and vision statements will become on ongoing part of district and local school communications.

Goal 4: District and local schools will conduct community outreach to include families of diverse  cultures, languages, and other nationalities.

  • Schools will be broadly promoted as “safe havens” for students of ALL nationalities, ethnicities, races, religions, genders, and gender preferences.
  • Schools will not promote dominate race, religions, or political beliefs above all others.
  • Schools will honor separation of Church & State in all their operations; sporting events, to incude practices, and any event that is led by a school employee, and also in regard to outside groups allowed on the campus, i.e., there will be no proselytizing from groups such as Fellowship of Christian Athletes on school campuses or during sporting activities. 

Goal 5: District will conduct ongoing assessment of D&I goals to ensure they are meeting the needs  of all employees, volunteers, students, families, and community.

  • District and local schools will conduct surveys, focus groups, and “town halls” in which student families and community members are encouraged to participate.
  • District will make public the results of all survey data.

Responsible for overseeing each goal:

Goal 1. Search Team/D&I Consultant

Goal 2. D&I Director, District and School Leadership

 Goal 3. D&I Director

Goal 4. Principals of each local school.

Goal 5. Principals of each local school

The deadline for each goal: 

Goal 1. Within 3 months

Goal 2. Within 2 years

Goal 3. Within 6 months

Goal 4. Within 3 months

Goal 4. Within 6 months

The deadline for Sub-goal 1: Within 6 months

The deadline for Sub-goal 2: Within 2 years

The deadline for Sub-goal 3: Within one year

The deadline for Sub-goal 4: Within 6 months

The deadline for Sub-goal 5: Within 1 year and bi-annually

The top 3 things that needs to be done to achieve each goal are:

Milestone 1. Director of D & I hired or appointed.

Milestone 2. Broad publication of D&I initiatives and revised mission statement

Milestone 3. All elected officials – Superintendent and Board members will reflect in word, deed, and their own diversity the D&I initiatives and mission statement.

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