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Educational Equity

Uplifting educational opportunities for children who need them most.


The Educational Equity Program uplifts educational opportunities for the children who need it the most, starting from our youngest learners (birth to five) in early care and education (ECE) and continuing through our K-12 public education system. We ensure that families, particularly in communities of color and high need, are given the necessary support and resources to access high quality education. Too often, a child’s zip code will determine their access to quality education and eventual outcomes. Achievement gaps persist among socioeconomic, linguistic, and ethno-racial groups, with alarming differences that reflect a gap in opportunities for future success. We envision a world where quality education unlocks every child’s full potential, and disrupts and addresses inequality and injustice. We focus our efforts on catalyzing informed policy decisions and investments that integrate well into the existing ECE system, intentionally building on and enhancing what already exists. We also place high priority on alignment between early learning and K-12 systems, working closely on community based and data-driven policy solutions that support children’s educational continuum from before birth to college and beyond. We believe a clearly articulated and aligned birth to 12 education system, that places the diverse needs of our underserved children at the forefront, will foster equitable upward mobility in communities most impacted by systemic economic and racial injustice.

With the understanding that education is an essential component in improving the lives and opportunities for all Californians, we work across the state and with a diverse set of stakeholders to improve the early learning and K-12 education systems. We believe that effective and respectful partnerships are the bedrock of success when working to fix a system responsible for educating more than 6.2 million children each year.

We lead a Birth to Twelfth Grade policy agenda, with distinct early childhood and education and K-12 teams that go deep into the equity priorities impacting the field, with an eye for building bridges between systems, and a lens of racial equity and economic justice. We do this through the following approaches:

  • Policy & Budget Advocacy – Focus on changing the Birth to Twelfth Grade system for long-term impact--while responding to the immediate needs surfaced from the pandemic--by uplifting the experiences of students, families, educators and providers of color, and elevating best practices that center diverse needs and culturally relevant practices.
  • Policy Implementation – Support the implementation of major initiatives to uplift the opportunities to embed or deepen equity and bridge ECE and K-12.
  • Convenings & Coalition Building – Host annual Water Cooler Conferences and work in coalition with partners to move a collective agenda focused on racial equity and economic justice.
  • Families in communities of color and low socioeconomic status neighborhoods have the support and resources to access a high quality education.
  • California builds on the cultural, racial and linguistic diversity of our population to give our youngest learners an opportunity to succeed.
  • Meaningful alignment and collaboration between the Early Care and Education (ECE) system and K-12 system.

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Meet the Team