Education track centers on diversity-related pedagogical practices

Christine Sleeter, education track keynote speaker

Colorado State University’s 17th annual Diversity Symposium takes place Sept. 26-28 in the Lory Student Center. A free event, the symposium brings local and national speakers on diversity and inclusion-oriented topics; sessions are open to the public.

For the second year in a row, CSU’s School of Education is sponsoring a one-day education track. Teaching Practices: Honoring Diversity and Inclusion will take place on Thursday, Sept. 28, beginning at 9:15 a.m and concluding with keynote speaker Christine Sleeter at 4:30 p.m. Participants may choose among the track’s 15, one-hour sessions centered on diversity and inclusion-focused pedagogical practices and evidence-based research. Speakers include current students, alumni, faculty and staff from the School and the greater CSU community, as well as local and national experts in the field of education.

To see a full listing of the day’s speakers, visit the official Guidebook schedule. For those interested, a professional development Certificate of Participation is available; more information will be provided at track sessions. For parking information, visit CSU’s Parking and Transportation Services visitor parking page.

A sample of session offerings

Inclusion Through Content Co-Teaching
9:15 a.m. – 10:15 a.m. | LSC 372
Research has demonstrated that special education students show more academic growth and positive, pro-social behaviors when they are able to access content in a general education setting. Providing these opportunities with adequate educational support is often a challenge, particularly at the high school level. Co-teaching is one highly successful model that promotes inclusion.

Fort Collins High School has developed robust co-teaching partnerships in nearly all content areas. Hear from FCHS staff regarding the successes, challenges, and the evolving nature of co-teaching.

United We Dream: Empowering Undocumented Students
10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. | LCS 376
While college-eligible undocumented students display great potential for academic success, they often face intractable challenges ranging from financial constraints to ostracism when trying to enroll in and attend higher education. While there is much policy debate regarding the educational rights of undocumented students, literature on specific ways in which universities can support undocumented students who are already enrolled is scarce.

This session will address some of the issues college faculty should consider when serving undocumented students in order to facilitate their college experience, and introduce innovative ways to build an inclusive classroom, supporting undocumented students.

Making Generational Diversity Work
12 p.m. – 1 p.m. | LSC 324
There are currently four generations in the workforce: Millennials, Generation X, Baby Boomers, and Veterans. Each generation has unique characteristics. Unfortunately, those differences are too often made negative and make working together feel like a challenge. Each generation’s world view affects how much the group as a whole learns, processes, and reacts to information. These varying world views can also effect leadership styles and behaviors in the workplace.

This session provides a forum to learn about and discuss different world views, in this case due to generational identity, and how they have the ability to impact leadership style, supervisory style, how individuals react to their supervisor, level of performance, and things as simple (yet complex) as an employee’s general feeling of happiness in the workplace.

Creating Authentic Dialogues: Mindfully Navigating Conversations
2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. | LSC 376
Dialogues are a fundamental part of how we relate to others. Often times, conversations can seem overwhelming when attempting to talk about diversity and inclusion. By introducing mindfulness into our interactions, we are able to sit through discomfort and unfamiliarity to reconsider what it means to have authentic dialogues. Mindfulness can help focus our conversation to facilitate engagement and understanding of perspectives that might be different from our own.

In this interactive session, participants will practice the art of directing attention to the present moment for a deeper connection with others as well as ourselves.

Keynote: Why Ethnic Studies and Critical Race Theory Matter for Education
4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. | LSC Theatre
Christine Sleeter is an author, speaker, teacher, and activist who uses creative work to spark insight about respect for the diverse people who share space in classrooms, schools, and communities, and to prompt action for equity and justice. Published books include Un-Standardizing Curriculum and White Bread.

Attendees are invited to join the School immediately following Sleeter’s presentation for an hors d’oeuvres reception, featuring an opportunity to mingle with keynote speaker, in the theatre lobby.

The School of Education is part of CSU’s College of Health and Human Sciences.