Bringing a diverse set of school board members together for decision-making can be a challenge. However, we find that school board diversity has tremendous benefits. Different types of people facilitate the exchange of creative thoughts and ideas. This exchange of valuable information results in continuous improvement and unifies the school district.
What does diversity actually mean? When we say “diversity,” we aren’t necessarily defining the word in terms of gender, ethnicity, race, etc. We define it in terms of ways of thinking. Diverse ways of thinking matter most, when it comes to making changes that will have a direct impact on student success.
Board members, administrators, principles, and teachers all bring something different to the table, based on their life experiences. Significant benefits are associated with sharing these diverse thoughts and experiences.
The key is to believe in the power of diversity. Leaders who recognize and draw on the power of diverse thinking within the school district and board will get far better results than those who focus on the differences as a barrier to achieving outcomes.
Diversity is a unifying force. If thoughtfully considered and utilized, diverse ideas have the power to help school districts attain educational excellence.