Embracing Tensions for Equity
Bridging Research, Policy, & Practice in Education
Friday, March 15, 2019, U-M School of Education
Proposal Applications Due January 22, 2019
As we engage in research, develop policy, and implement practice, we must resolve various tensions in order to create equitable solutions. Negotiating how to apply differing methodologies and navigating our positionalities and obligations to multiple stakeholders are a few of the inherent tensions in our work. Eliding these tensions is problematic—they have consequences for the lived experiences of every stakeholder in education, from students to policymakers.
The debate involving the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), implemented in 2012, provides an example of the type of tensions involved in equity work. The administrative protections provided to Dreamers, children and young adults who entered the United States without documentation, are now in jeopardy under the current presidential administration. Researchers, policy-makers, and practitioners must grapple with tensions related to DACA’s position as an administrative program that can be more readily “rolled back,” as well as its prohibitions against providing undocumented students with federal and state financial aid, which potentially hinders Dreamers’ access to higher education. This is just one example of some of the overlapping tensions that inform the work of researchers, policymakers, and practitioners in that area.
Reimagine your current work: how can you leverage who you are and what you bring to your work in a way that productively and generatively confronts these tensions and promotes diversity, equity, justice and inclusion?