Minnesota's educational achievement gap between whites and students of color has been narrowing, but remains one of the highest in the nation. To more fully address youth's learning and gaps in academic performance, we need to redefine educational excellence in a global society.
To be successful in school now and ready for college and careers later, young people need to develop a range of skills that extends beyond traditional academics. Content knowledge and academic skills are important, but it is also critical that youth learn how to work well with others, persevere when faced with challenges, and recognize when a new strategy is needed to solve a problem. These social and emotional factors are critical to young people's success, and they can be developed through diverse life experiences and overcoming hardships or struggles.
On Oct. 2, Dr. JuanCarlos Arauz will share a framework for creating a rigorous inclusive environment with a diverse community and reframe the concept of equity issues from a deficit approach to an asset-based approach by identifying the skills young people gain from their diverse life experiences and translating them into success within and beyond the classroom. For those who want to dig deeper, on Oct. 3 Dr. Arauz will facilitate a training for those working directly with young people. You can register for either event or both on our website. This symposium and training is part of our series dedicated to understanding social and emotional learning and its contribution to closing the achievement and opportunity gaps.
Dr. Arauz' work on cultural resilience outlines five competencies derived from life experiences that can be correlated to 21st century skills:
- Acculturation - The ability to survive one's environment by analyzing two or more cultural contexts that show various perspectives, observations, and experiences.
- Navigation of borders - The ability to survive and navigate a continually changing environment.
- Inter/Intra cultural communication - The ability to effectively communicate with an individual from a different cultural background.
- Teamwork - The ability to place a priority on the needs of the group by effectively influencing and being influenced, while collaborating with others to accomplish a group task.
- Creative Self-Expression - The ability to solve problems creatively that do not necessarily have a solution.
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