Education Equity Conferences

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The Virginia Department of Education hosts several convenings to facilitate statewide discourse and professional development focused on the public policy levers, evidence based practices, and preparation necessary to ensure that Virginia educators are empowered and equipped to advance equitable outcomes for ALL students. Beginning with the Virginia is for ALL Learners Education Equity Summer Institute in 2018, the Department hosts an Equity Conference annually each summer.

2021 Education Equity Summer Institute

NOTICE: Registration for the 2021 Summer Equity Institute is now open!

The Virginia Department of Education will host the Virginia Education Equity Summer Institute in combination with a statewide conference on Teaching African American History virtually June 15-16, 2021. The event is free of charge and all K-12 teachers and division personnel are encouraged to participate. 

Join Governor Ralph Northam, Virginia Secretary of Education, Atif Qarni, and Superintendent of Public Instruction, Dr. James Lane for this two-day conference, which will focus on culturally responsive and inclusive educator practices and teaching African American History through culturally sustaining pedagogies.  

Breakout sessions and keynotes will provide professional development to support Virginia’s recently expanded History and Social Science standards and the implementation of the new elective course in African American History for high school students that will launch this fall. Sessions will also advance culturally responsive practice at four critical levels (school, educator, leadership, and teaching/pedagogy) in alignment with new legislative mandates in culturally responsive practice.

This year’s conference will convene over two days: 

June 15-Teaching African American History Through Culturally Sustaining Pedagogies  

June 16-Culturally Responsive and Inclusive Education Practices

Registration Information for the 2021 Summer Equity Institute

Before registration, please read the following instructions:

  • Step 1:Click here to access the registration page through the Virginia Tech Office of Continuing and Professional Education (CPE). 
  • Step 2: Complete keynote registration. Please note that this will register individuals for ALL keynote sessions for both conference days. 
  • Step 3: Upon registration for the keynotes, you will receive a confirmation email that includes a link to a Google form where you will indicate the breakout sessions you’d like to attend. Space is limited, so please only register for one session per breakout section. Please note that Day 2 breakout session are offered twice so that individuals are able to attend two of the three sessions live.   
  • Step 4: You will receive a confirmation email on June 14, 2021 containing links to each keynote and the specific breakout sessions you picked, along with login information. 

All breakout sessions will be recorded and made available at a later date through #GoOpenVA and on the Virginia is for Learners Website.

All inquiries regarding the joint conference may be directed to the Office of Equity and Community Engagement at or Christonya Brown, History and Social Science Coordinator, at 804-225-2893, or

2020 EdEquityVA Week Symposiums

Governor Ralph S. Northam proclaimed November 30-December 4, 2020 as EdEquityVA Week in the Commonwealth. EdEquityVA Week is an opportunity to recognize the efforts of Virginia educators to advance equity outcomes for all Virginia students. In recognition of EdEquityVA Week, the Department hosted the EdEquityVA Week Virtual Symposiums (December 1 & 2, 2020):

Culturally Relevant Pedagogy featuring a Keynote Address by Dr. Gloria Ladson Billings.

Closing Opportunity Gaps featuring a Keynote Address by Dr. John King.

EdEquityVA Virtual Summit 2020

In lieu of the annual Education Equity Summer Institute, the Virginia Department of Education’s Office of Equity hosted an #EdEquityVA Virtual Equity Summit. 

The 2020 #EdEquityVA Virtual Summit brought together educators and leaders from across the state to explore the implications of institutional racism in public education and raise state discourse and action around courageous teaching and leading, equity, and the principles of anti-racism.  All sessions provided focused on building an educator workforce that is positioned for anti-racism and cultural proficiency to ensure that Virginia’s public education system is one that maximizes the potential of all students

Day One: Educators – Courageous Teaching

Invited: Teachers, Principals, Instructional Specialists, Equity Coordinators & Division Level Equity Chiefs




Keynote: We Want To Do More Than Survive: Abolitionist Teaching

Dr. Bettina Love, Professor, Author, and Speaker

Break Out Sessions

Topic & Recording Presenter
Anti-bias Curriculum: Auditing Your Curriculum for Bias Kenya Wallach, Director of Mathematics, Discovery Education
Anti-racism 101 Dr. Andrew Daire, Dean & Professor, VCU School of Education Dr. Joshua Cole, Director of Strategic Engagement, VCU School of Education
Courageous Teaching: Race, Bias, & Racism Maria Burgos, Supervisor of Global Learning & Culturally Responsive Instruction, Prince William County Schools
A History of Racism in America Dr. Donald Grant, Jr., Executive Director of the Center for Community & Social Impact, Pacific Oaks College

Day Two: Leaders – Courageous Leadership

Invited: Superintendent Teams, Administrators, School Board Members, Division level Equity Chiefs/Directors

Break Out Sessions

Topic & Recording


Navigating EdEquityVA Virginia’s Road Map to Equity

Dr. James Lane, Superintendent of Public Instruction, Commonwealth of Virginia

Leah Walker, Director of Equity, Virginia Department of Education

Courageous Connections: Discipline, Race, & Achievement

Dr. Jennifer Piver-Renna, Director of the Office of Research, Virginia Department of Education

Dr. Kenneth Anderson, Professor and Associate Dean in the School of Education, Howard University

Michael Gregory, Virginia Tiered Systems of Support (VTSS) Specialist, Virginia Department of Education

Courageous Equity Leadership

Dr. Toya Barnes-Teamer, Principal, HCM Strategies

Equity & Antiracism: Auditing Your Policies & Procedures

Deborah Keys Write, Board Governance & Equity Consultant

2019 Virginia is for ALL Learners: Education Equity Summer Institute

The Virginia Department of Education, in collaboration with Virginia’s Secretary of Education and VCU’s School of Education provided this conference for Virginia educators, school leaders, education policymakers, and other invited stakeholder group representatives.

2018 Virginia is for ALL Learners: Education Equity Summer Institute

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