Race & Education

Confronting Systemic Racism

In direct response to the racial reckoning currently happening in The United States, The Hunt Institute has created a new webinar series, Race & Education, to confront head on the issues of systemic racism.


The Hunt Institute is committed to having honest conversations about issues of race that are embedded in and impact all of public education. The Institute views all of its programs through an equity lens, and the Race & Education webinar series is another opportunity to lift up the voices of the people and organizations who have dedicated their time and resources to improving outcomes for children of color.

Since the first episode on July 28th, 2020, the series has featured individuals from a host of organizations fighting for racial equity, including My Brother’s Keeper Alliance, The American Indian Graduate Center, The Latino Community Foundation,  XQ Institute, The Center for Black Educator Development, The Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture, Winston Salem State University, and Partner With Legacy.

Through these important conversations, we at The Hunt Institute hope to continue to learn, share, and implement solutions to the equity issues in America’s education system.

Upcoming Webinars

All Politics are Local: School Boards and the Fight for Racial Equity
August 17, 2021 @2pm


Building Culturally Affirming School Environments
August 30, 2021 @2pm



Please reach out if you have any questions or comments about these upcoming webinars. We aim to find the right panelists and moderators to speak effectively on the issues and are representatives of the children these problems impact.

Past Webinars

We hope these important conversations serve as a catalyst for policymakers, nonprofit leaders, administrators, and educators hoping to make a substantive difference in the fight for racial equity in public education. Below you will find past webinar descriptions, panelists, and complete recordings.

Episode 1: Challenging Racism in State and Local Education Systems

There is much to be done in education to improve equity and access for children of color. In this webinar, education leaders spoke about the racism Black, Latinx, and American Indian children face in education, policing in schools, and evidence-based strategies for dismantling systemic racism.

Denise Forte, Senior Vice President at The Education Trust
Michael Smith, Executive Director of the My Brother’s Keeper Alliance
Angelique Albert, Executive Director of the American Indian Graduate Center
Christian Arana, Policy Director of the Latino Community Foundation

Episode 2: The Pressing Need for Culturally Responsive Curriculum in Classrooms

Schools and school districts across the country are working to confront systemic racism in hiring, policy, and administration. While the need to confront racism in bureaucracies is real, education leaders cannot forget the importance of challenging racism in their schools and their main weapon – classroom curriculum. In this webinar, hear from curriculum experts about best practices for finding and using a culturally responsive curriculum to teach students the values of equity and diversity.

Dr. Heather Harding, 
Senior Director of Educational Grantmaking at the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Foundation
Dr. Selma K. Bartholomew, President of Partner with Legacy
Rodney Robinson, 2019 Virginia Teacher of the Year and National Teacher of the Year
Ann Katherine-Kimble, Curriculum Designer at the XQ Institute

Episode 3: Building the Next Generation of Diverse Teacher Leaders

Overcoming the systemic racial barriers in education cannot be done without the hard work of teacher leaders who promote equity inside and outside of the classroom. While America’s teacher shortage is widely discussed, there is not enough conversation about the national shortage of teachers of color and what more diversity could bring to local schools and school districts. In this webinar, education policymakers shared strategies they are using to recruit and retain a new generation of diverse teacher leaders.

Dr. Travis Bristol, Assistant Professor, UC Berkeley
Dr. Donna-Marie Cole-Malott, 
Pennsylvania Department of Education
Dr. Anthony Graham, Provost, Winston Salem University
Pedro Rivera, Pennsylvania Secretary of Education
Gerard Robinson, Adjunct Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute
Dr. Kebbler Williams, Director of K-12, The Hunt Institute

Episode 4: The Intersections Between Racism and Poverty in Education Policy

As state leaders seek to address systemic racism in education policy, they need to understand more about the intersectionalities impacting student achievement. In this webinar, education policy experts spoke about the compounding challenges poor children of color face as they navigate the K-12 education system.

Pamela Inbasekaran, Executive Vice President of Relay Graduate School of Education
The Honorable Aaron Ford, Nevada Attorney General
Dr. Howard Fuller, Founder of the Institute for Transformative Learning at Marquette University
Sharif El-Mekki, CEO at the Center for Black Educator Development

Episode 5: Confronting Implicit Discrimination in Schools and School Districts

As schools and school districts attempt to show their commitment to improving equity and access for students, they cannot miss the opportunity to confront hidden bias in the education system. While education leaders often believe that they treat their students fairly regardless of their race, everyone has hidden biases that could impact students’ learning inside and outside of the classroom. In this webinar, hear from experts on how implicit discrimination could be impacting school performance and how to recognize and confront hidden bias in the education system.

Dr. Andrew Daire, Dean of Virginia Commonwealth University’s Graduate School of Education
Rosario Quiroz Villarreal, Policy Entrepreneur at The Next 100
Karol Mason, President of John Jay College of Criminal Justice
Dr. Ventura Rodriguez, Senior Associate Commissioner of MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

Episode 6: Identifying and Supporting the Human Needs of children of Color

Leaders must seek to understand the social and emotional needs of students of color who are processing recent acts of police brutality and the loss of life sweeping across the country from COVID-19. While the national trauma is reaching all students and families, the human needs of children of color are often understudied and neglected by policymakers. In this webinar, resource experts spoke about the human challenges facing children of color during this period of national uncertainty and how leaders can help students through the trauma so they can focus on themselves and their learning.

Shawn Brown, Executive Director of Becoming a Man (BAM) Boston
Veronica Crespin-Palmer, Co-Founder & CEO of RISEColorado
Dr. Aaliyah Samuel, Executive Vice President of NWEA
Elaine Townsend Utin, Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director of LatinxEd

Episode 7: Student Perspectives on the Future of Inclusion and Equity in K-12 Education

Implementing education policy change can only be done successfully with the buy-in of education’s most important stakeholder, students. Young people have been the drivers behind every major civil rights change in the United States, but their leadership in education policy organizations has been traditionally underutilized. In this webinar, hear from a panel of students who are currently working on the frontlines of challenging systemic racism in the education system.

Andrew Brennen
, Education Fellow, National Geographic
Brianna Cea, Founder & CEO, Generation Vote
Kenvin Lacayo, Dean of Students, DC Public Schools
Maya Logan, University Senate Speaker Pro Tempore, UNC-Chapel Hill

Episode 8: Evidence-Based Approaches to Challenging Systemic Racism in Education

The roots of systemic racism are real and continue to be a challenge for educators and policymakers. While the problems in unequal access and treatment are ubiquitous in education systems across the United States, there are solutions that policymakers can scale to make a change. In this webinar, hear from education and philanthropy leaders about the evidenced-based strategies they are investing in for making reforms to state and local education across the country.

Dr. Tequilla Brownie, Executive VP of Strategy, Policy, & Community Coalitions, TNTP
Robert Raben, President, The Raben Group
Cheryl Thompson, Director of Education Grantmaking, Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation

Episode 9: Racism in America’s Child Care Industry

As America’s education system adapts to a continued civil rights crisis and the global pandemic, the nation’s child care industry is in jeopardy. Child care practitioners, mostly women of color, have had their livelihoods threatened by center closures and the inequity in child care access for children of color has increased learning gaps. In this webinar, hear from child care industry experts who will talk about the child care issues plaguing black and brown children and their families.

Dr. Kerry-Ann Escayg
, Assistant Professor, Teacher Education, University of Nebraska Omaha
Dr. Bernadine Futrell, Senior Director of Effective Practice, National Head Start Association
Dr. Iheoma Iruka, Director Early Childhood Health & Racial Equity, FPG Institute at UNC-Chapel Hill
Jennifer McConnell, Director, Brookland Academy Child Development Center

Episode 10: Supporting Leadership Diversity and Anti-Racism in Education Change

Tackling systemic racism in education policy takes not only scalable solutions, but strong leadership in policy organizations. While there are many education policy organizations, there is a lack of diversity in policy perspectives and staffing from people of color. In this webinar, hear from a panel of education policy leaders about how to create a pipeline of anti-racist leadership in policy organizations and how including those perspectives improves an organization’s impact.

Dr. Desmond Blackburn
, CEO, New Teacher Center
Dr. Nancy Gutiérrez, President & CEO, The Leadership Academy
Kimberly Robinson, Elizabeth D. and Richard A. Merrill Professor of Law, University of Virginia School of Law
Dr. Javaid Siddiqi, President & CEO, The Hunt Institute

Episode 11: The Marginalization of Black Girls and Women in Education

America’s education system has served as fertile ground for the devaluing and marginalization of young women of color. As we seek to achieve true equity in our society we must protect and support young women of color throughout their educational journey. In this panel hear from national policy and education experts on the academic, emotional, and professional challenges facing women of color in the education system and beyond.

Lieutenant Governor Juliana Stratton of Illinois
Jen McGowan-Tomke, Chief Operating Officer, NAMI Chicago
Kayla Patrick, Senior P-12 Policy Analyst, The Education Trust
Elizabeth Todd-Breland, Associate Professor of History, The University of Illinois-Chicago

Episode 12: Community Activism and Coalition Building For Educational Equity

State leaders cannot hope to create and implement policies that remove systemic barriers for children of color, non-binary, and LGBTQ youth without support and accountability from the communities they serve. Across the world, there exists a rich history of social movements fighting on behalf of intersectional lives lived at the margins of society. In this webinar, hear from leaders on the front lines of coalition building, activism, and necessary conversations, highlighting the voices of those who understand the importance of “good trouble” in the quest for dignity for all people and educational equity for all children.

Sharhonda Bossier, Deputy Director, Education Leaders of Color
Rosa Clemente, Journalist, Political Commentator, and Organizer
Representative Malcolm Kenyatta of Pennsylvania
Alberto Retana, President & CEO, CoCo South LA.

Episode 13: The Intersection Between Racism and Gender in Education Policy

As education leaders seek to address systemic racism in our schools through shifts in policy, they need to expand their understanding of how the intersectional identities of our students play out in the day to day lives of young people. While a student’s race has a large effect on their educational experiences, so does their gender identity and gender expression. In this webinar, hear from a range of experts on how gender and racism intersect in the education system and what supports children of color need in order to lead meaningful and joyful lives.

Sophia Arredondo,
Director of Education & Youth Programs, GLSEN
Cherrah Giles,
Board Chair, National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center
Rodrigo Heng-Lehtinen,
Deputy Executive Director, National Center for Transgender Equality
Carlos Velazquez,
Chief Program Officer, Boys’ Club of New York

Episode 14: Cultural Pedagogy and the Arts

Schools and school districts across the country are working to confront systemic racism in hiring, policy, and administration.  While the need to confront racism in staffing and systems is necessary, education leaders cannot forget the importance of challenging racism in their schools via their main weapon – classroom curriculum and instruction. Often viewed as an add-on, the arts are critically important to the cognitive and emotional development of children. In this webinar, hear from a range of artists about the importance of the arts and how they can be leveraged as part of a culturally responsive toolkit in our classrooms.

Dr. Amelia Kraehe of University of Arizona College of Fine Arts
Edwin Sorto of KIPP DC
Shana Tucker of Kidznotes
Rosa Rodriguez-Williams of Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Episode 15: The Invisible Tax Educators of Color and the Water They Carry

Educators of color, like all educators, face common challenges associated with the profession: depressed salaries, hours outside of the traditional workday, and inadequate supplies. However, for BIPOC educators, there is an added layer, an invisible tax that pushes them to navigate the racial trauma of colleagues, students, and direct reports all while doing the same for themselves. In this panel, hear from a range of lifelong educators with a variety of vantage points – from the classroom to the superintendent’s cabinet – as they speak on the obstacles faced by Black and brown educators while trying to navigate their careers.

Tauheedah F. Baker-Jones, Chief Equity and Social Justice Officer, Atlanta Public Schools
Maurice R. Swinney, Chief Equity Officer, Chicago Public Schools
Karla E. Vigil, Co-Founder & Chief Connector, Equity Institute
Jose Luis Vilson, Co-Founder & Executive Director, EduColor

Episode 16: Criminal Justice and Schools

As schools and school districts seek to address systemic racism, they must continue to address the issue of policing in schools and how it leads to the criminalization and dehumanization of BIPOC students. Research shows that there is little correlation between increased police presence and improvements to school safety. However, the research is quite clear on the benefits of investing in school mental health resources: the presence of mental health providers in schools improves both student outcomes and overall school safety. In this webinar, hear from activists, educators, and attorneys as they discuss the investments critical to supporting students’ social and emotional needs while exploring the relationships schools have with police.

Harold Jordan
, Senior Policy Advocate, ACLU PA
Jhumpa Bhattacharya, Vice President, Insight Center for Community and Economic Development
Ricky Watson, Executive Director, National Juvenile Justice Network

Episode 17: Preparing the Next Generation of BIPOC Stem Leaders

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, experts in the field are predicting a rapid acceleration in the growth of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics careers. Despite the current and future increased need for these skillsets, students of color have faced significant barriers in their pursuit of pathways into STEM careers, and BIPOC exit STEM jobs at a disproportionately higher rate than their white peers.

Dr. Eve De Rosa, Associate Professor, Cornell University
Dr. Brian Garrett, Regional Program Director, East SMASH
Dr. Malik Henfield, Founding Dean, Institute for Racial Justics
Dr. Mimi Fox Melton, Chief Executive Officer, Code2040

Episode 18: Latinx Identity on College Campuses: Not a Monolith

Last year, the federal government appropriated more than $140 million to Hispanic-Serving Institutions. By 2025, it is expected that there will be more than 4.4 million Hispanic and Latinx students in Higher Education. On Tuesday, May 18, join The Hunt Institute for a discussion about what will be needed to truly serve these students.

Melanie Godinez-Cedillo, John M. Belk Impact Fellow, The Hunt Institute
Paul Luna, President & CEO, Helios Education Foundation
Armando Rodriguez, Trustee, Canutillo Independent School District
Dr. Deborah Santiago, CEO, Excelencia in Education

Episode 19: Indigenous Education – Past, Present and Future

While education can be a vehicle for uplift, opportunity, and social mobility, it can also be leveraged as a mechanism for exclusion and as a tool of forced assimilation. Resource experts discussed the intersections of American Indigenous education and hopes for liberation.

Angelique Albert, American Indian Graduate Center
Diana Cournoyer, National Indian Education Association
Sarah Echohawk, American Indian Science and Engineering Society
Dr. Amanda Tachine, Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College

Episode 20: Misogynoir in Education

As the fight for gender equity in education policy and leadership continues, we must examine the obstacles faced by Black women in education leadership and elected office. Black women often face dual burdens lived at the intersection of their race and gender identity, frequently subjected to lower compensation, micro-aggressions, and a slew of other insults not faced by their male peers, or white female colleagues. In this webinar, resource experts discussed the discrimination faced by Black women in education spaces and how the field can address this long legacy of asking so much, while providing so little.

Dr. Elizabeth Todd-Breland
, University of Illinois-Chicago
Dr. Dia Bryant, The Education Trust
Adaku Onyeka Crawford, National Women’s Law Center
Dr. Ofronama Biu, CUNY

Episode 21: Combatting the Model Minority Myth in Education

When examining the barriers and obstacles faced by students of color, Asian American students and community members are often overlooked. Due to the prevalence of the Model Minority Myth, American society has long neglected the needs of Asian American students, falsely asserting that their academic experiences mirror that of white peers and thus, they don’t need our attention. In the wake of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it is abundantly clear that Asian American students face discrimination, bias, and hate at alarming rates. In this webinar, resource experts discussed the challenges, successes, and needs of America’s diverse Asian American students.

The Honorable Sharon Tomiko Santos,
Washington State Rep
Kat Ling, Moonshot edVentures
Leangelo Acuna, Roosevelt Middle School
Takeru “TK” Nagayoshi, New Bedford Public Schools

Episode 22: HBCUs in the Wake of COVID-19

The pandemic has disrupted the operations and finances of colleges across the nation, but as communities of color have been most impacted by COVID-19, Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) face significant challenges. Historically and currently, HBCUs have served not only students’ academic needs, but also their social-emotional and health through comprehensive culturally-based wraparound services. This role has been especially crucial during the pandemic, as institutions work to ensure that students are safe, healthy, and connected to resources and support. In this webinar, HBCU leaders and alumni will discuss the crucial role of HBCUs in supporting the Black community as a whole and the impact of COVID-19 on the future of HBCUs.

Dr. Roslyn Clark Artis,
Benedict College
Dr. Karrie Dixon,
Elizabeth City State University
Angela Sailor,
The Heritage Foundation