Equity in Action
Canyons provides the opportunities, students put in the hard work to reach their dreams.
There has been a lot of public chatter — and disagreement — over the words “equity” and “inclusion,” especially in light of the Utah State Board of Education’s new Educational Equity in Schools rule. But to understand what it looks like in Canyons District, you need only look as far as the students who are rising to new heights after taking advantage of opportunities. The new rule, which went into effect in early August, really just reinforces what Canyons has been doing since its inception, says Superintendent Dr. Rick Robins. At the heart of the new rule is an assurance of opportunity and inclusion for all students, a philosophy embedded in CSD’s mission that every student graduate college- and career-ready. “It’s an aspirational mission, to be sure,” said Robins, “but one we espouse unapologetically and that was built on the understanding that, while every student learns differently, every student can learn and achieve.” Because there isn’t one path to graduation or college- and career-readiness, it’s our job as a school system to meet students where they are, and tap into their talents and interests with instruction tailored to their needs. “It’s our job to set up every student for success,” Robins said, while noting this non-partisan, foundational value dates back to our Founding Fathers. Two of our greatest Founding Fathers, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, were fierce political adversaries. But in the first years of our nation, these rivals — with vastly different backgrounds and disparate political views — shared common ground. They both believed in the importance of funding public education. Rather than squabbling, Adams and Jefferson knew that public education was at the heart of democracy. So, in practice, what do equity and inclusion look like in our schools? It looks like students who see an opportunity — and put in the hard work to achieve their dreams. These are the stories that are playing out in classrooms every day all across Canyons. The forward motion of our students as they reach for their dreams through education is, indeed, equity in action.