Ready News: September 7, 2018

In This Issue: Business Engagement, Equity, Juvenile Justice, Opportunity Youth

Equity is Empathy in Action

Blog by Jonathan Raymond, President of the Stuart Foundation


Everyone is talking about equity, but what does it really mean? We were excited to see Jonathan Raymond’s recent blog exploring this question. In the blog, Jonathan draws on his experience as superintendent of the Sacramento school system to differentiate the ideas of equity and equality, and provides some real examples of how to put the idea of equity into practice.

“People tend to confuse equity with the concept of “equal treatment,” which means treating everyone the same. In fact, the two couldn’t be more different. It’s easy to treat everybody equally. In the case of promoting an innovative program, you send out a flyer to every family in the district inviting parents to an open house.

But what if some parents can’t read? What if the open house is scheduled in the evening, and some parents work nights? Equal treatment doesn’t require empathy or compassion – all it takes is a Xerox machine, pumping out as many copies of the flyer as there are addresses on your mailing list. Equity, on the other hand, requires a deep understanding of the community you hope to reach. It can mean unequal levels of effort aimed at the most disadvantaged, and that’s okay. It’s more than okay – it’s equitable.”

Read more.


Business Leaders Value Broader Range of Skills for Career Success


The importance of social and emotional skills in the workplace has been well-documented, but a recent virtual focus group of business leaders hosted by the Aspen Institute National Commission on Social, Emotional, & Academic Development and Citizen Schools revealed the broader array of skills that today’s employers value such as intellectual curiosity, willingness to give and receive feedback, personal ownership of problems and challenges, and recognition of unconscious bias.

The focus group also revealed many businesses are taking steps to intentionally prioritize these skills by embedding them within key organizational practices such as explicitly measuring and rewarding social and emotional skills in hiring and performance. The commission will continue engaging with leaders from different sectors as it discusses both the ways to approach social, emotional, and academic development in schools and communities and the demand for these skills in society at large.

Explore more about the work of the commission.


How Do We Get to Equity? Reflections on Systemic Change

American Youth Policy Forum Blog


How can you be an agent for change? Over the past few months, Jessica Kannam with the American Youth Policy Forum (AYPF) has been exposed to a few different ideas, resources, and presentations that have challenged her to think more critically about the role and impact that all of us have in creating and improving systems to ensure equitable educational opportunities for all. Here are a few of her reflections and lingering questions on the intersections of equity, agency, inclusion and systems change.

Read more.


New Program from the Center for Juvenile Justice Reform


The Center for Juvenile Justice Reform (CJJR) at Georgetown University, in partnership with OJJDP’s Center for Coordinated Assistance to States, has issued a request for applications from jurisdictions seeking to engage in multi-system improvement efforts.

The Multi-System Collaboration Training and Technical Assistance Program supports jurisdictions that are interested in developing or enhancing a sound infrastructure to promote multi-system approaches to serving at-risk, justice-involved youth and their families. CJJR will provide on-site and distance-learning training and technical assistance to a cohort of up to 4 jurisdictions-at no cost to the sites- to help them to identify gaps in policy and practice, enhance information sharing capacities, explore how key decision points impact the trajectory of the youth currently being served, develop an evaluation strategy for tracking system- and youth-level outcomes, and sustain long-term system change.

Learn more.


New Reenengagement Tools Help Cities Connect with Opportunity Youth


The National League of Cities Reengagement Network recently released two resources for implementing or adopting comprehensive strategies to reconnect Opportunity Youth to jobs, education and civic life. These resources include the annual Reengagement Census, updated with information from 20 sites for the 2016-17 school year, and an easy-to-use form that provides the means to calculate return on investment – namely, how expenditures on reengagement produce returns in the form of increased earnings, decreased spending on public safety, improved health outcomes, additional school district funding and savings to taxpayers.

For more on these new reengagment tools click here.