On September 15, nearly 300 attendees gathered in San Diego for The Education Trust-West’s first Educational Equity Forum. This year’s focus–Ensuring College & Career Readiness for Students of Color & Low-Income Students–drew so much interest that they had a waiting list of 75 people.
Prompted by the “real need to link policy development and implementation more directly to practitioners,” Jelena Hasbrouck, Ed Trust-West’s assistant director of communications, explains that the purpose of the event was to bring people together from the administrator, educator, support staff, and advocate communities to “better establish relationships that cultivate the type of innovative change that we see in schools that are closing opportunity and achievement gaps quickly.”
Post-event evaluations indicate the most popular sessions included a lunch panel discussing strategies to support young men of color, as well as videos showcasing high school and college students describing the supports and school staff who helped them on the path to college.
While the event enabled Ed Trust-West to launch their Education Equity Champion Network, there is still more in the works. Next, they’ll focus on engagement and cultivation of that network through follow up meetings and further collaboration.
Hasbrouck has advice for advocates interested in hosting an event like Ed Trust-West’s:
Consider your own experience as a conference attendee and how that can inform developing your own events.
To connect with the Ed Trust-West team, please reach out.