What are Neighborhood Equity Teams? Is there anyone in central office that can explain the role of the teams and the cost of developing the teams?
As proposed by Montgomery County Public Schools' (MCPS’) African American Student Achievement Action Group (AASAAG), the Neighborhood Equity Teams (NETs) would be collaborative teams of MCPS staff, students, parents/guardians, and community stakeholders focused on equity at the local school level. NETs would create a forum for MCPS staff and community stakeholders to engage in structured partnerships and continuous dialogue linked to the school improvement plan and closing the achievement gap. Through the ongoing partnerships, NETs would foster co-ownership of student achievement between schools, parents/guardians, and community.
The development of these teams would be a strategy that would align to the existing work of school improvement planning. Equity specialists currently support schools in implementation of structures that strive for the same goals. While the format of Study Circles and the existing structure of school improvement teams in many of our schools provide a forum for school staff and parents/guardians to collaborate on the school improvement planning process, a distinct difference between those strategies and neighborhood equity teams is the elevation and integration of the role of parents/guardians and community in this strategic work.
Implementation of the NETs would have minimal additional budget implications. While the oversight of NETs would rest with the Equity Office (see Question 20), the management and operation of the groups would be done in collaboration with the new Office of Student Support and Engagement. The only additional cost would be approximately $25,000 for the professional evelopment and training of staff and community members in community building similar to what was provided this year to the parent community coordinators in the Office of Community Engagement and Partnerships.