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Office of Equity and Organizational Diversity

The Office of Equity and Organizational Diversity is an important part of the Department of Equity and Student Services. Dr. Brenda J. Russ leads our office. 

We use equity at every level of the school system, including in making decisions. Our mission is to achieve educational equity. Our definition comes from the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE):

"Educational equity is the process of eliminating the predictability of students’ outcomes based on race, gender, zip code, ability, socio-economic status, or languages spoken at home."

This means providing every student with what they need to be successful. Our students have diverse backgrounds and unique talents, so one size does not fit all. Our diversity makes us stronger.

Quotation graphic: Everyone has their own fit. Equality is giving everyone a pair of shoes, equity is giving everyone a pair of shoes that fits. This was said by Enid Lee.

RCPS' Equity Policy supports our diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) work. The Equity Task Force includes a diverse group of teachers, parents, students, staff, community members, administrators, and Central Office leadership. The Equity Task Force uses the Virginia Equity C’s reflected in the below graphic. Click here to learn more about the Virginia Equity C’s.

The responsibilities and goals of our office are to:

  • Normalize equity, diversity, and inclusion (DEI) in all aspects of the organization,
  • Support schools and staff in their work to close opportunity gaps,
  • Examine biases and expose inequities,
  • Ensure equitable access and opportunities for all students, particularly marginalized students,
  • Co-lead the RCPS Equity Task Force,
  • Assist in the development of DEI policies and guidelines,
  • Ensure equitable processes and procedures, including resource allocation and capital improvement projects, 
  • Collaborate with all departments and offices, and
  • Provide ongoing, targeted professional learning for all staff members.
 

Contact Information:

Dr. Brenda J. Russ
Director of Organizational Diversity and Equity
(
540) 853-1088
bruss@rcps.info

40 Douglass Avenue NW, Roanoke, VA 24012 Phone 540-853-2502