Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

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Nationwide, children of diverse racial, ethnic, cultural, socioeconomic, and linguistic backgrounds are too often viewed as challenging, "at-risk," and of limited intellectual capacity. Wide disparities in achievement bear witness to the ways in which the educational and social systems have failed those most in need of support. Historic discrimination coupled with changing demographics necessitates clear and intentional efforts to support young children who are racially and ethnically diverse in achieving their personal, academic, and economic potential. A primary mission of FPG is to generate knowledge about the social context in which children of color live, establish programs that produce positive outcomes for those children and their families, and use that knowledge to prepare caregivers and teachers to provide the best possible environments for promoting development and success. Equity, diversity, and inclusion matters at the Institute.

Featured Project

Through collaboration with national, state and local coalitions and organizations, the Equity Research Action Coalition works to identify, track and align strategies to strengthen the focus on protecting, promoting, and preserving the well being, health, wealth, access and experiences of Black families and their families through anti-racist and cultural wealth policy making framework and communication. Learn about the Black Infant and Toddler Equity Project.

Featured Program

Working with practitioners and policymakers, the Equity Research Action Coalition will pursue research that promotes and supports the healthy development of Black children across the African diaspora and other children of color. The Coalition will focus on developing science-based evidence that can be used to inform practice and policy aimed at eradicating the impact of racism, and all its consequences, on the lives of Black and other minoritized children, families, and communities.

Featured FPG News Story

In 2018, a team of researchers at the UNC Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute and George Mason University launched the Bilingualism, Education, and Excellence (BEE) Project, which was funded by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) within the U.S. Department of Education. Learn some initial insights from the team.

Current Projects

The purpose of this project, in partnership with ServeMinnesota, will focus on two distinct but related research aims. First, it will evaluate the effectiveness of the updated and expanded Florida Reading Corps program. Second, it will ensure that the Florida Reading Corps program operates in a maximally equitable manner for all students, especially for Black and Latine students, multi-lingual learners, and/or students experiencing poverty.
The purpose of this project is to deploy a comprehensive stakeholder engagement and program assessment strategy to support a deeper understanding of the current landscape of disability inclusion, along with unique challenges, opportunities, perspectives and relevant factors impacting states, tribes, and territories as well as children with disabilities and their caregivers.
This project will develop an African-centered, culturally responsive practice guide with specific strategies, exemplars, and materials with connected professional learning modules to guide effective implementation. The ultimate and long-term goal is to increase Black children’s social, cognitive, and emotional skills (e.g., racial identity, engagement, learning motivation, regulation), leading to strong academic and social competence and school success.
The purpose of this study is to examine associations between language of instruction, student engagement, academic-self-concept, approaches to learning, student-teacher relationships, and gains in academic outcomes for students attending dual language educational settings.
Through collaboration with national, state and local coalitions and organizations, the Equity Research Action Coalition will identify, track and align strategies to strengthen the focus on protecting, promoting, and preserving the well being, health, wealth, access and experiences of Black families and their families through anti-racist and cultural wealth policy making framework and communication.
This model demonstration seeks to increase family uptake of developmental screenings and service enrollment of traditionally underserved populations by centering family and cultural voice throughout the implementation process.
The goal of this series of studies is to develop recommendations that could be used to inform the next revisions of the ECERS-3, a global early care and education quality measure for children aged 3-5 that examines quality from the child's perspective.
The purpose of this project is to conduct a pilot study examining the impact of Family Engagement Specialists' beliefs and attitudes (e.g., bias) on their engagement with families.
The National Center on Parent, Family, and Community Engagement (NCPFCE) was established to strengthen the capacity of Head Start, Early Head Start, and child care communities to achieve positive, enduring outcomes for the children and families they serve. NCPFCE's goal is to promote exemplary practices for family and community engagement in support of children’s school readiness and healthy development; parent leadership and advocacy; family economic mobility; community partnerships; individualized support for families; and staff-family relationships that are equitable and culturally and linguistically responsive. Researchers will conduct evaluation activities for the Region I FEM Academy, as well as support the ongoing operations and project management tasks. The evaluation data collection will focus on the post-academy phase, including a 6-month follow-up. The findings from the evaluation will be compiled into summary evaluation reports.
Black families of children with disabilities face additional stress and difficulties because of their multiple marginalized statuses, particularly within the intersection between racism and ableism. These parents and caregivers may be tasked with teaching and conveying messages to their children about how to navigate social settings, like school, as a Black child with a disability. According to the U.S. Department of Education (2018), among students ages 3 through 21 served in special education, less than one-fifth are Black/African American (17.7 percent), but Black/African American students with disabilities account for more than one third (36.6 percent) of individuals who experienced disciplinary removal. Ethnic-racial socialization (ERS) practices have been found to mitigate the effects of such discrimination on children’s development. They are defined as verbal and nonverbal racial communication between families of color and their children about cultural heritage and pride, preparing youth for racial bias, and promoting healthy distrust of the dominant racial/ethnic group. ERS practices promote academic engagement and achievement and serve as a protective factor among Black youth amid racist discrimination. Yet, little is known about what these practices may look like for Black children with disabilities as ERS practices have typically been studied among able-bodied children. Ultimately, findings from this study seek to serve as a resource to educators, researchers, and policy makers who work with or on behalf of Black families and their young children with disabilities to aid them in developing best practices that are rooted in anti-racism, anti-bias, and equity.
The purpose of this collaborative partnership is to bring together the expertise of three research centers from top-tier research universities for the purpose of (a) understanding the science behind how racism impacts the lives of young children of color and (b) developing tools to communicate this impact to people who are making daily decisions on behalf of the well-being of children—their parents, educators, clinical practitioners, and policymakers.
The goal of this project is to expand the focus and reach of the RISER Network to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and other related organizations and institutions to mentor pre- and post-doctoral fellows. Fellows interested in the research-to-practice-to-policy for Black children, families, and communities will receive multi-tiered, equity-centered, culturally grounded methodological and experiential experiences to guide their future careers.
The purpose of this multi-organization partnership is to leverage existing collaborations, expertise, and work to bolster all three partnering organizations’ activities to mitigate the impacts of this double pandemic – COVID-19 and racism – on Black families with children, birth to age 5.
The purpose of this project is to gather perspectives from current "Parents As Teachers" families and parent educators. This is a developmental evaluation to understand how "Parents as Teachers" could address race-based trauma and stressors and support the positive racial identity formation for young children.
The goal of this project is to identify opportunities and barriers to community based organizations, namely civil rights organizations such as the NAACP, The Leadership Conference, the National Urban League, NALEO Education Fund, Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAJC), National Congress of American Indian (NCAI) in prioritizing early childhood development including access to high quality and affordable child care.