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"Bravo to authors Cohn-Vargas, Gogolewski, Creer Kahn, and Epstein for their ground-breaking book on Identify Safe Schools for administrators, teachers, and staff leaders! They provide much-needed evidence for educators to elevate and even inspire the equity, empowerment, and academic growth needed to wholly support all children to flourish in school and their lives."
"Belonging and Inclusion in Identity Safe Schools: A Guide for Educational Leaders is a timely and important book. For several years, the nation's schools have been asked to focus their energies on raising student achievement. However, too often educators have ignored the need to honor, support and affirm the identities of the students they serve. For educators who serve children of color, particularly Black, Native American and Latinx children who are often subject to overt and covert forms of forced assimilation, this book will be an invaluable resource on how to create le
"Based on a robust foundation of researched evidence and theory, and embracing ‘targeted universalism’, Belonging and Inclusion in Identity Safe Schools offers specific strategies for achieving systemic equity in schooling. The emphasis is on disrupting racism, but the integrative approach supports identity safety and enhanced belonging for a range of diverse student identities, and incorporates trauma-informed practices.
Belonging and Inclusion in Identity Safe Schools: A Guide for Educational Leaders is an extraordinary book that should be read by teachers of all grade levels throughout the United States and beyond. Time is long overdue for this book that explains many of the inequalities in all areas of our institutions, from education to housing to incarceration…. The authors make clear how investment in a more inclusive society results in benefits for all people. I commend the authors!
Belonging and Inclusion in Identity Safe Schools is brave, bold, and brilliant! Asking "How will each of us contribute to racial justice and educational equity now?" What are ways that each of us has intrinsically adapted behaviors that perpetuate the dysfunction of our society into the shaping of our children? Taking a systems approach to transform school culture in addressing the well-being of the whole child, every child, Belonging... unfolds a powerful strategy to guide us through the process.
As a former teacher in both secondary and university level education, I highly recommend Belonging and Inclusion in Identity Safe Schools: A Guide for Educational Leaders for all educators who want to fully actualize their teaching practices in terms of creating identity safe schools, so crucial to our students’ sense of belonging.
I applaud the authors’ focus on identity safety in the school community. Their approach celebrates and embraces unity in diversity. The identity safe approach goes beyond creating a physically safe school to addressing an emotionally safe school community. In an identity safe school, students embrace being themselves and can truly belong as unique individuals rather than try to fit into a stereotypical mold. The book's examples clarify what is unconscious “othering” and color blind behavior versus identity safe practices.
Belonging and Inclusion in Identity Safe Schools: A Guide for Educational Leaders offers sound research, inspiration, and well-tested resources and strategies for education leaders committed to creating inclusive, equitable, and thriving schools. It provides both the theory and the tools to strengthen inclusion and equity through professional development, coaching, partnership with parents and families, data and assessment, discipline, school governance, and more.