Teacher Inclusion in DEI Initiatives

Redefining normal.

Jennifer Osborne
Educate.

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Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives are becoming more common in educational institutions. McKinsey & Company refers to DEI as the inclusion and fair treatment of all people regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, physical ability, and neurodiversity. Research has shown that employees are more engaged when they feel a sense of belonging in the workplace.

Additionally, moving beyond an inventory of diversity to a systematic approach to inclusion is essential to ensuring meaningful change in how we accept and appreciate diversity in the workplace. While corporations are seeking to embrace neurodivergent individuals as part of the workforce, educational institutions are woefully behind in the inclusion of neurodivergent educators. To further create deep structural change, DEI policies should be implemented that directly address neurodivergent educators as welcome and accepted members of the educational workforce.

Neurodivergent educators are an under-researched and misunderstood population of existing educators, so much so, that almost all research is centered on teachers with disabilities. The neurodiversity movement is rather recent, originally coined by Judy Singer in 1998, as a way to replace the deficit-based approaches to disabilities. Neurodiversity includes conditions such as autism…

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Jennifer Osborne
Educate.

Educational Leadership Policy Ph.D. Student ⎪Editor of Educate. medium.com/educate-pub