Know the difference between “diversity,” “equity,” and “inclusion.”

Though they’re often presented collectively as “DEI,” these terms each have their own meanings. To me, diversity means embracing and honoring a wide array of differences. It’s more than representing difference; it’s about celebrating and supporting it. I define equity as fairness; it’s meeting students where they need to be met. Inclusion simply means belonging: when a student walks into a classroom, do they feel like they belong in it and that they will be valued?

It’s important to recognize that diversity can exist in spaces that are not equitable or inclusive. For example, a company might make hiring underrepresented groups a priority, but that doesn’t necessarily mean those groups will feel welcomed or supported. Though they’re intertwined, each of these terms requires its own attention and action. –Karen Thomas-Brown

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