Worcester State to Host Statewide Conference on Equity

October 1, 2019
By: Maureen Stokes

Educators from throughout Massachusetts will convene in the Wellness Center on Friday, Oct. 4, for a day-long conference addressing equity for Latinx students. The conference, In Pursuit of Equity, Accountability and Success: Latinx Students in Massachusetts Schools (PEAS), will feature opening remarks from Massachusetts Department of Education Commissioner Carlos Santiago, President Barry M. Maloney, and Marco Davis, president and CEO of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute. Each speaker will bring their unique perspective and urgency facing Latinx students, the state’s largest growing population.

According to a Massachusetts Department of Higher Education report, nearly one in four graduating high school students in the state will be Latinx by 2032. Preparing for this workforce with training, skills, and education is a priority, according to Santiago.

“Representing the only growth sector of the Massachusetts population, our Latinx students make vital contribution to our schools, colleges and universities,” says Santiago. “At the same time, our data shows that too few Latinx students are graduating with degrees and certificates needed to compete for high-skilled jobs. We owe them every opportunity to succeed and I applaud the organizers of this conference for putting the spotlight on the need to address racial disparities.”
Participants will attend workshops and engage with local, state, and national leaders versed in research, strategy, and programming that impacts Latinx students from pre-K through college, including private universities.

“It is fitting to hold this conference at Worcester State, in the year that we celebrate the 20th anniversary of our Latino Education Institute. We will be sharing university best practices in promoting Latinx achievement, and we hope to learn from those attending. I am grateful to Commissioner Santiago for setting before us a challenge the public campuses can unite behind: enhancing the economic and social mobility of Massachusetts residents who have been historically underserved,” said President Maloney.

Lead organizer of the PEAS conference is the Latin Education Institute and American Student Assistance (ASA) is the lead sponsor.

Additional information about the PEAS Conference can be found at tinyurl.com/pursuit-of-equity.

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