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Student Behavior Through An Equity Lens


Naperville 203 is working to promote a positive climate and culture through safe, welcoming, and inclusive learning environments using equity-centered classroom management strategies and student-focused, culturally responsive discipline.

A team of district administrators discussed the steps taken, thus far, during a Board of Education meeting on Monday, Sept. 20, and went on to outline plans for continued success moving forward

“Awareness and professional development have been key factors in our efforts to reduce suspensions and address the behavioral disparities between student groups,” said Dr. Rakeda Leaks, Naperville 203’s Executive Director of Diversity and Inclusion. “We believe the work that each school experienced through the Deep Equity training and the ongoing professional development in culturally responsive practices will help us to continue to learn about our diverse student populations with an emphasis on recognizing our own biases that may be contributing factors to the behavior disparities.”

Naperville 203 is in the process of identifying and defining policies, procedures, and decisions that will allow the district to identify where targeted supports are needed and provide the ability to track progress toward equitable discipline practices and outcomes. The district is committed to ensuring individualized and responsive behavioral practices that lead to reducing the disparities among student groups.

“Along with providing professional learning to educators, it is critically important for the district to conduct an analysis of data trends as they relate to behavior in our schools,” said Lisa Xagas, the Assistant Superintendent for Student Services for Naperville 203. “Examining the data through an equity lens allows us to identify and further define policies, procedures and decisions that promote positive, individualized and equitable practices.”

The district’s recommendations are centered on supporting our students in developing important skills regarding their behavior, training and supporting our staff in best practices associated with student behavior, and taking responsibility for the educational outcomes of all of our students in the district. By aligning Naperville 203’s beliefs and values on student connection and belonging with the practices, the expectation is that the district will see positive shifts in student engagement and increased positive student behaviors.